‘God helps them what help themselves.’
‘What does that mean?’
‘Means hold my hand and run like a bastard.’
I love that quote. I don’t know why, but I love it. There are plenty of good quote worthy lines in Stone Heart (by Charlie Fletcher). That is the first one in my opinion. The speaker for the first and third sentences was the Gunner, for the second sentence, George, the main character, was talking. This story has what you might call alternate dimensions. George is on a field trip with his class and gets in trouble for something he didn’t do, so he leaves the museum. Angry, he punches a stone dragon, expecting to hurt his hand. Strangely enough, he doesn’t get hurt, but the head snaps off the dragon. This sends George into an un-London, which is an alternate London. George discovers almost immediately how it is different from his. How? Well a stone pterodactyl peeled itself off the building and chased him through London. Three stone salamanders also joined the chase, and he was close to getting it when he was saved by the statue of a gunner, who is called the Gunner (simple to remember). The Gunner is made of bronze, and has a rain cape. I like him. Anyway, he shoots George’s pursuers, then has to run with him to a safer place (which brings about the quote that I gave). George learns that the Gunner is a statue with a spirit, statues that have spirits are called spits. Statues with no spirit, like the pterodactyl and the salamanders, or gargoyles and dragons, are called taints. Half human half animal things like sphinxes are half spit half taint.
But there is “another player in the game”. Her name is Edie. And she is a glint. She has no idea what a glint is, and only discovers that she is one when the Gunner calls her that. It had started raining, so the cat-like gargoyle pursuing them had to leave and go back to the building it was made for. Because it has to do what it was made to do. Anyway, later, Edie finds out from the sphinxes that a glint is someone who can see through all layers of what is, what isn’t, and what might be. So she is able to see the spits and taints move for example. Glints are bad luck, and they can glimpse the past, which is rather painful for the glint and the statue (if she is viewing the past via a statue). It’s a really good book, there’s a good plot. It turns out George is a maker, and he’s the first maker to ever break something (the dragon at the start of the book). He has to “make amends” at the “stone heart”, which might or might not be the London stone or whatever it’s called.
Meanwhile, they’ve got enemies, oh yes they do, the servants of the stone for example. The Raven and the Walker. The Walker is always walking, he can’t stop, it’s impossible for him. He is easily forgotten (one of his powers) and can make it so he can’t be seen. Cool powers, it’s a pity they belong to a bad guy. The Raven is quite amusing at points as well, especially the part where the Fusilier got it. XD This book was recommended to me by the friend who does the flash fiction blog with me. And she’ll be lending me the rest of the books so there will be reviews up of those too. 🙂 Anyway, this is a very good book, which I’m sure you’d like if you like the idea of alternate dimensions, or worlds being like layers, one on top of another. I give this book a ten out of ten (or if I want to be ridiculous, one hundred out of ten). And I add it to my current group of favorite books. I shall have to see if I can get it on audiobook for my mp3 player.