The Screaming Staircase

The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co., #1)The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Lockwood and Co: The Screaming Staircase definitely has an intriguing backstory, with the world beset by ‘The Problem’, which is basically ghosts coming out at night and often trying to kill you and there were lots of exciting bits but some bits just dragged. I was also initially very distracted by trying to work out what era this was set in, it reads at first very much like Victorian Steampunk but then a reference to a TV there or a dishwasher here would throw me right out. I came to the conclusion that it’s set in the modern day but a reality where ghosts have roamed for fifty years has made the world a little old fashioned in a way. But there were still confusing lines, like one of the main character’s mum having thick washer woman arms from having a job washing clothes by hand, if they have things like the aforementioned dishwashers, why was her job washing clothes by hand? Sorry, I’ve just devoted more words to dishwashers and washing clothes in this review than what was actually mentioned in the book. Anyway, in The Screaming Staircase, Lockwood and Co., a small agency of ghost hunting teenagers (children see ghosts, most adults don’t) are hiring, Lucy joins them and they’re soon in trouble when they accidentally set fire to a client’s house whilst trying to get rid of a ghost. Those sort of bits were quite exciting, the backstory bits a bit boring.

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