Don't get yourself noticed and you won't get yourself hanged.
In the faery slums of Bath, Bartholomew Kettle and his sister Hettie live by these words. Bartholomew and Hettie are changelingsPeculiarsand neither faeries nor humans want anything to do with them.
One day a mysterious lady in a plum-colored dress comes gliding down Old Crow Alley. Bartholomew watches her through his window. Who is she? What does she want? And when Bartholomew witnesses the lady whisking away, in a whirling ring of feathers, the boy who lives across the alleyBartholomew forgets the rules and gets himself noticed.
First he's noticed by the lady in plum herself, then by something darkly magical and mysterious, by Jack Box and the Raggedy Man, by the powerful Mr. Lickerish . . . and by Arthur Jelliby, a young man trying to slip through the world unnoticed, too, and who, against all odds, offers Bartholomew friendship and a way to belong.
Part murder mystery, part gothic fantasy, part steampunk adventure, The Peculiar is Stefan Bachmann's riveting, inventive, and unforgettable debut novel.
Stefan Bachmann is a writer and musician. He was born in Colorado and now lives with his family in Zurich, Switzerland, where he attends the Zurich Conservatory. He began writing The Peculiar in 2010, when he was sixteen years old.
“Bachmann’s prose is beautiful, and his story is swift, strong, and entertaining. Highly recommended. I can’t wait to see what Bachmann writes next.”
-CHRISTOPHER PAOLINI, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Eragon (The Inheritance Cycle)
“Stefan Bachmann’s sparkling debut is sure to get a lot of well-deserved notice. He breathes fresh life into ancient magic.”
-RICK RIORDAN, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Kane Chronicles and Percy Jackson and The Olympians
“Polished and fun to read…Bachmann’s steampunk fairy tale…recalls Dostoevsky, Dickens, and more recent classics, such as J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events.…Bachmann leavens the dark goings-on with whimsy…in spectacular and hilarious fashion.…[An] unusually gifted young writer.”
-Los Angeles Times
“Richly realized . . . accomplished … This is a story young fantasy buffs are sure to enjoy.”
-The New York Times Book Review
“Imaginative, highly descriptive writing . . . Thrilling adventure.”
“An absolute treat for readers of any age.”
-Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Gripping . . . with a wry humor and unusual characters. Fans of Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book (HarperCollins, 2008) and young steampunk enthusiasts will find much here to enjoy.”
-School Library Journal