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Bad Luck Lighthouse

The Bad Luck Lighthouse

Published: 4 Jul 2019

Paperback / softback, 384 pages

Recommended for age 9+ and 11+

By Nicki Thornton

Published by Chicken House Ltd

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In solving the mystery of the Last Chance Hotel, Seth has discovered a bewildering new world of magic. Swept up in the new MagiCon case investigating ghostly goings-on at the remote Snakesmouth Lighthouse, he is determined to prove himself.

But when eccentric owner Mina Mintencress is murdered, Seth realizes danger lurks around every corner. With the help of his cat, Nightshade, Seth must put his new-found magic to the test. Can they unmask a sinister sorcerer ...before it's too late?

The thrilling sequel to The Last Chance Hotel, a magical murder mystery for young readers Readers will love guessing whodunnit with the novel's fantastic ensemble cast, grounded by the brilliantly relatable Seth and his magical cat,

This title features in our The Reading Journey selection.

Tagged detectives and spies and magic

The Seth Seppi Mystery series

The Cut-Throat Cafe : 3
The Bad Luck Lighthouse
The Last Chance Hotel

Reviewed by Rachel Elvidge

The Bad Luck Lighthouse is an exciting locked room mystery with a magical twist!

Goodness, this is gripping! While working at The Last Chance Hotel, young chef Seth Seppi became embroiled in a murder case. That book introduced the extraordinary world of MagiCon, the magical detective force. In this latest novel in Nicki Thornton’s atmospheric series, Seth follows Inspector Pewter to the sinister Snakesmouth Lighthouse, to investigate ghostly goings-on. Mistaken for the new kitchen boy, Seth soon stumbles across a dead body in the bathtub. It seems like murder… but the bathroom door was locked! Could there really be ghosts at work?

Fiendishly twisted, the story keeps readers fully engaged as we follow Seth’s investigations and try to keep up with the enigmatic Inspector Pewter. Seth’s lack of experience in both magic and detecting make him an ideal central character, with others taking the time to explain to him exactly what is going on. This means that despite the fast pace, a young reader is well able to keep up with the plot, despite the twists and turns.

A subplot about Seth’s background and abilities runs throughout the series. Having discovered that he might possess magic of his own, Seth does not find his first steps in spell casting easy. His talking cat is less than helpful, and his copy of The Beginner’s Guide to Really Easy-Peasy Magic turns out to be more challenging than he hoped. Perhaps it is not quite the right book for him? In a spellbinding scene in the magical library, the importance of placing the right book in the right hands is emphasised.

So, into which hands should you place this book? The Bad Luck Lighthouse is an ideal independent read or class novel for upper juniors, the strong characters, gripping mystery, magical detail and satisfying denouement will make it a hit with fans of Robin Stevens, as well as anyone who enjoys mystery and magic novels.

Rachel has 20 years experience in primary school teaching, most recently running reading interventions in an Ofsted Outstanding school in Essex. A firm believer that there is always something new to learn, she recently completed an MA in Early Childhood Education. In the same spirit, she also attends latin and ballroom lessons, sadly with a less than impressive outcome! Rachel works for Just Imagine as an Education Consultant, currently overseeing The Reading Journey.