Review: City of Cannibals

Posted on April 16, 2010

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City of Cannibals
By Ricki Thompson
Boyds Mills Press
February 2010
269 pages

Dell’s father is an abusive drunk. Fed up with his cruelty she runs away to the big city to find out the truth about her past from a boy she knows. It could be the story of any teen anywhere but 16-year old Dell lives in 16th Century England under the oppressive reign of King Henry VIII. The boy, whom she knows only as Brown Boy, has quietly delivered a sack of gifts to her mother’s grave every month for as long as she can remember. Except her father has forbidden Dell to show her face to him, so they have never met. Dell believes Brown Boy knows secrets about her mother who was a lady-in-waiting for Queen Catherine, before she died in a tragic accident. Throughout her quest Dell crosses paths with a parade of colorful characters and is exposed to more myths and realities than she bargained for. In the process she discovers that Brown Boy is hiding some secrets of his own.

Like a masterful storyteller Ricki Thompson transforms a dangerous state of affairs into a rollicking adventure. She balances the brutality of the medieval period with an innocent love story. Vivid details combined with earthy vulgarity transport readers to London’s gritty streets. City of Cannibals is historical fiction with a healthy dose of Shakespearean charm and wit.

Copyright (c) 2010 by Peggy Tibbetts

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