Author Julie Sandilands - Titles - Finn's Tale 2010 - A Gypsy's Tale 2011 - Publisher - Purple Flame Books - I feel that in Julie Sandilands work a new and gifted talent is appearing on the horizon. These tales are imaginative, engaging and different. I love the dynamic of introducing friendships and conversations with badgers. There is also a grounding in the countryside and its delicate life. Both Finn and Ryan the chief characters in the tales listed above are attractive and caring young people. Julie seems to be able to capture in easy style the inner conversations and deliberations in a child's mind. The language of the text is clear and has its own fascination. New and perhaps unfamiliar words are introduced which should aid the extension of the reader's vocabulary. Adults enjoy the books too in fact once started one must read on. The illustrations deserve special mention and greatly enhance the stories. Enjoy the treat! --Maureen Farrell Ph.D Manchester --Maureen Farrell
Ryan is a young Gypsy boy: the year is 1967.
After being banished from Tyndale by the angry villagers, he and the other Gypsies head north and set up camp in Appleby, traditionally a safe haven for the travelling community, especially in June when the annual Horse Fair is held.
Ryan befriends Hawkeye, a local gamekeeper’s son and is quickly made aware that something sinister lurks in the countryside surrounding the quiet town. Forming an unlikely alliance with Ed and Ollie, (two local badgers), the boys find themselves lost in a world of intrigue and suspense. Between them, the comrades have to uncover the true mystery behind the evil, and try to stop it before it threatens not just the countryside, but the inhabitants of Appleby itself.
A cracking good read for both adults and children.