The Swifts by Beth Lincoln

Written by Beth Lincoln, Illustrated by Claire Powell, Published by Puffin Books

As a debut, this is phenomenal. The entire story leaps off the pages and I could barely tear myself away for any reason.

We meet the Swift family as they rehearse for Aunt Schadenfreude’s funeral, something they have been doing for a long time. Uncle Maelstrom, sisters Phenomena, Felicity and Shenanigan and John the Cat. They all have a role to play in the ceremony, while Aunt stands back and makes comments and bosses them about.

This great family live in a strange old house, added to with each generation of Swift and with rumours of a vast treasure hidden somewhere on site. Every so often, a family reunion is called and Swifts descend in their masses with tools and tricks to find the hoard. This time, accidents and murder seem to be keeping the family busy and no one has enough time to hunt.

The names of each family member are chosen from a vast dictionary, hence the names like Candour, Pique, Flora and Fauna. Believing their names to be the crux of their personalities, each family member assumes a different role. Even without the events of the reunion, there is so much fun to be had in just meeting the characters. A long story that flies by as you read and get immersed in the mysteries, murder and mayhem.

I am adding this to my top picks of 2023 already!

A brilliant book- one that I would happily read again and again!

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