Fly By Night


Genre Children

Year 2012

Language English

Volume book: Full version

‘A delightful historical fantasy about the power of books – with a thoroughly unexpected heroine. Sophisticated, funny and fresh; I loved it’ Meg Rosoff

‘Frances Hardinge’s phenomenally inventive Fly By Night is remarkable and captivating, masterfully written and with a wealth of unexpected ideas… Full of marvels’ Sunday Times

‘Mosca is, rather like Philip Pullman’s Lyra, a fierce black-eyed street survivor… Fly By Night is like delving into a box of sweets with a huge array of flavours’ TES

‘Fly By Night is a wonderful and wondrous novel, wholly original while following brilliantly in the footsteps of Joan Aiken, Leon Garfield and DianaWynne Jones. Frances Hardinge has joined the company of writers whose books I will always seek out and read’ Garth Nix


A fantastic adventure story set in an alternative historical world that launches the career of a uniquely talented children's writer. In a fractured Realm, struggling to maintain an uneasy peace after years of civil war and religious tyrrany, a 12- year- old orphan and a homicidal goose become the accidental heroes of a revolution. Mosca has spent her life in a miserable hamlet, where her father was banished for writing inflammatory books about tolerance and freedom. Now he is dead, and Mosca is on the run after unintentionally setting fire to a mill. With a delightful swindler named Eponymous Clent, she heads for the city of Mandelion. A born liar, Mosca lives by her wits in a world of highwaymen and smugglers, dangerously insane rulers in ludicrous wigs, secret agents and radical plotters. She is recruited as a spy by the fanatical Mabwick Toke, leader of the Guild of Stationers, who fears losing his control over the publication of every book in the state. Mosca's activities reveal a plot to force a rule of terror on the Realm, and merry mayhem soon leads to murder… FLY BY NIGHT is set in a re-imagined early-eighteenth century England, where kite-powered coffeehouses take to the river, and citizens lay offerings at the shrine of Goodman Blackwhistle of the Favourable Wind. Funny and surprising, stuffed with wonderful characters, at its heart it contains an inspiring truth – that the power of books can change the world.

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