Lizzie Rose and Parsefall are two orphaned children under the care of a puppeteer named Grisini. Grisini is an awful man who exploits the children. Apart from being an awful man he is also a master puppeteer capable of making his puppets look a live.
Clara Wintermute is the only child of a wealthy family. While she has it all, Clara is miserable at home. When she first sees Grisini’s puppets on a day out she is mesmerized and invites Grisini, Lizzie Rose, and Parsefall to entertain her birthday party. However, when Clara disappears after her birthday party, suspicion is placed on Grisini and the children.
It’s up to Lizzie Rose and Parsefall to discover Clara’s whereabouts and in the process learn more about Grisini’s dark past and dastardly plans.
Writing (world building, characters, style, etc.):
While I can’t say that there was a lot of character development throughout the book, I feel that the characters were well defined when they were first introduced. I got a clear sense of who they were and their personalities and this made me feel closer to the characters.
Did I learn anything? Did it make me think?
Splendors and Glooms sounds like a good spooky read full of ghosts and ghouls and other things that go bump in the night. In reality the book is nothing like that. This book is so much more than the title suggests. Splendors and Glooms touches on some pretty important topics like child exploitation, physical and emotional abuse, neglect and sexual harassment. All very real things that can happen to children without a home or any one to protect them and care or them.
I most certainly recommend this book.