Birdie shrugged. "Ain't no shortage o' vermin in this world. And I'd rather be a bogler than a rat catcher."
"But it's so dangerous, Birdie. So unsuitable for a child your age!"
Birdie couldn't help laughing. "I'd rather kill bogles than get black lung in a mine. I'd rather be a bogler's girl than work in a match factory and have me jaw eaten away by acid. Or get stuck in a chimney, or drowned in a sewer, or chopped up by a machine--"
"Yes, I understand that there are many children who must do perilous things to earn their keep," Miss Eames acknowledged. "It is a sad fact of life. But surely there must be another way of luring bogles out of their burrows?"
"No." Birdie was adamant. "Bogles eat children. All bogles do. Ain't nothing else they like so much."
Birdie is bait. Proud of the respectable living she makes for herself, helping to protect the children of Victorian London from the creeping monsters who snatch them from small, dark spaces when no one is looking. She stands in a circle of salt singing loudly with her beautiful voice until a bogle shows up for her, then she leaps out of harm's way as Alfred, the bogler she's 'prentice to, stabs them with his spear. She may be an orphan who was almost a tosher, but she's not your typical urchin.
Then the posh Miss Eames starts meddling in Birdie's business, trying to convince Alfred he shouldn't be putting her in harm's way. And Sarah Pickles starts trying to recruit Birdie to her gang of pickpockets. And, all the while, more bogles to lure and kill. There's no end of those wanting to lay claim on Birdie's life, and her exploits are just beginning.
Excellent pacing with plenty of excitement and wonderful use of language, this is a fun--if gritty--urban adventure. And Mandy Williams not only nails the audiobook accents, she adds in a large dose of lovely singing.
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