Beth and Chrissi Do Kid-Lit- Black Hearts in Battersea (The Wolves Chronicles #2)

Black Hearts in Battersea (The Wolves Chronicles, #2)

How did I get it?:
I bought it!

Previously reviewed by the same author:
The Wolves of Willoughby Chase


‘Wait, wait! Save us! What’ll we do?’

Simon is determined to become a painter when he grows up so he sets off to London to make his fortune. But the city is plagued by wolves and mysterious disappearances. The Twite household, where Simon is lodging, seems particularly shifty. Before he even gets a chance to open his glistening new paints Simon stumbles right into the centre of a plot to kill the King. And worse than that Simon is kidnapped and sent to sea! Luckily there are two friendly stowaways aboard – the feisty Dido Twite and the spoiled young Justin. But when the ship catches fire things look pretty dire. Can they escape? Will they save the king in time?


I really enjoyed the first instalment in this series intended for children but totally readable for adults. It has an old-fashioned feel to it which I absolutely love. We learn about a minor character (Simon) from the first book. We are also introduced to new characters such as Dido Twite. I love that this book can be read as a standalone book. You don’t need to read the first one to enjoy this one!

In this story, Simon goes to London to learn how to paint. He’s in search of Dr Field, but no one seems to know where he is or much about him at all. There’s some conspiracy against the King and the Duke and Simon combines studying and working to try and figure everything out.

It’s a book where you have to go with the plot. It’s crazy and silly, but that, in my opinion, is totally its charm. Some things are very unbelievable, but it’s worth going with it for the sheer fun that is this series. I have really enjoyed Joan Aiken’s writing style in the two books I’ve read so far. It’s easy to read and has humour within the story, something I think is very important in keeping young readers engaged.

I have to admit to being a little frustrated with the slang in the book. I know it fit with the character, but I felt it made my reading experience a little stilted which is what affected my enjoyment of the story as a whole. That said, it’s so worth reading, especially if you’ve read the first book in the series.

For Beth’s wonderful review, please check out her blog HERE!

Would I recommend it?:

Next up in Beth and Chrissi Do Kid-Lit Challenge (November):
Witch Child – Celia Rees

Beth and Chrissi do Kid-Lit: The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (The Wolves Chronicles #1)

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (The Wolves Chronicles, #1)

How did I get it?:
I borrowed it from Beth!


Can you go a little faster? Can you run?

Long ago, at a time in history that never happened, England was overrun with wolves. But as Bonnie and her cousin Sylvia discover, real danger often lies closer to home. Their new governess, Miss Slighcarp, doesn’t seem at all nice. She shuts Bonnie in a cupboard, fires the faithful servants and sends the cousins far away from Willoughby Chase to a place they will never be found. Can Bonnie and Sylvia outwit the wicked Miss Slighcarp and her network of criminals, forgers and snitches?


If this book would have an emoji, it would definitely be the heart-eyed emoji. I absolutely adored this book. I totally got it confused with another series and so wasn’t overly excited about reading it. However, this story gripped me right from the start and I think it’s going to be a book that I buy for myself to use in the classroom. I really thought it was an outstanding piece of children’s literature!

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase centres around Bonnie and her cousin Sylvia. Sylvia comes to live with Bonnie and her family after her aunt becomes unwell. Bonnie comes from a well to do family. Bonnie and Sylvia have a new governness, who is supposed to care for the girls whilst Bonnie’s mother and father are away. She’s a horrible woman. Bonnie stands up to her, so she shuts Bonnie in a cupboard with little food. The governess fires the sevants and sends away the cousins far away from their home. Bonnie and Sylvia end up being treated shockingly at their new ‘school.’ They have to find a way back to their home before everything is destroyed by the governess.

I loved to hate the evil villains in this story and trust me, there are plenty of them. I loved Bonnie’s fiesty attitude and her determination to do what was right. Bonnie and Sylvia seemed to connect straight away and to me, felt like sisters more than cousins. There are some amazing characters in this book which you quickly love or hate. This book really did make me smile. I read it in no time at all, and I think it truly will stay a classic!

What I love about this book, is that it may have been published in the 1960s but it feels timeless. It feels exciting and fresh and something that children now would enjoy as well.

For Beth’s brilliant review, please check out her blog HERE.

Would I recommend it?:
Without a doubt!

Next up in the Beth and Chrissi do Kid-Lit Challenge (October):
Ballet Shoes- Noel Streatfeild