By Catherine Jinks
HMH Books for Young Readers, 2013
Audience: Children, Younger Teens
If ever a chill entered her soul, or the hope suddenly drained from her heart, she knew a bogle was to blame. Birdie McAdam, a ten-year-old orphan, is tougher than she looks. She's proud of her job as apprentice to Alfred the Bogler, a man who catches monsters for a living. Birdie lures the bogles out of their lairs with her sweet songs, and Alfred kills them before they kill her. On the mean streets of Victorian England, hunting bogles is actually less dangerous work than mudlarking for scraps along the vile river Thames. (See glossary!) Or so it seems—until the orphans of London start to disappear . .
This book was so much fun. I really liked the main character. I’m glad she was spunky, smart and strong. I liked the fact that the best apprentice Alfred found was a girl. I wish I would have known about the glossary before I started reading, though. Most words can be figured out through context clues. I liked how there was something much more sinister going on in the book than bogle catching. That extra mystery really added to the story.