Book review of The Children of the Spider

Published: Saturday, 01 April 2017 Written by Kijandae Joseph

Title:                                      The Children of the Spider.

Author:                                   Imam Baksh

Main Characters:             Mayali, Rafeek and Joseph

Other Characters:       Erskine Ravel, Madame Mist, Anton Shudder, Ghastly Bespoke, Sean 


Book Review: Children of the Spider by Imam Baskh.

The book Children of the Spider brings to life a fantasy fiction based in the Caribbean. The exciting and fast pace of events has intertwined normal Caribbean way of life with imaginative magical powers by integrating myth and methodology very neatly and taking readers on an adventure beyond the natural realm of this planet. This mixture of animation and real life humans characters carries a semblance of Anansi’s  stories but it has deviated slightly from depending on pure trickery to get a solution to a more innovative and action-oriented approach. The plot is engaging and the characters make the story come to life so vividly that readers become engrossed.

The book features Mayali, a girl from Zolpha land, who left everything behind to travel to the island of Guyana in a desperate search for her father whom she believes was kidnaped by the evil giant spiders. This led her to befriend and come into contact with other characters as the plot unfolds. The first friendship that she developed was with an unlikely ally, a deaf and mute boy named Joseph who like Mayali, was on the run. Soon they decided on an even more important mission, which was to save the world from invading spiders that they claim are causing havoc in the country. Joseph’s disability did not interfere with their mission because in quick time the friends developed a communicating method which enabled them to tackle the problem they were confronted with.

I like the determination displayed by Mayali throughout the book. She abandoned everything to pursue the freedom of her father. She even got a position as a maid to earn some money and to learn to speak the creole language of Guyana, in order to blend in while she planned her next move. Also, it is amazing how quickly she learned to communicate with Joseph making her mission easier. I must admit that although I work hard at what I do I do not go this far to ensure success.

At the beginning, I did not like reading the creole and got a bit frustrated, however, this did not last long and I soon found myself looking forward to those conversations with the dialect.

The book appeals to Caribbean readers and although f dialect is used, the story is quite easy to understand and follow. The use of magic and animation is well placed to capture the interest of almost all readers especially the younger ones. In addition, the use of technology gives it a modern flavor and separates it from the old Anansi stories. Generally, although certain scenes could be developed further, it is a book that could be used for a movie and developed for an action-packed drama series. I must admit that it is quite an interesting book and I enjoyed reading it.





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