It’s not very often that I get my hands on a book quite so far out from the publication date, and even less often do I actually read something as soon as it arrives. Reece Carter’s upcoming middlegrade fantasy debut A Girl Called Corpse, however, is coming out in October, and not only have I already got it on my shelf (massive thanks to Allen & Unwin for sending me an early copy!) but I just couldn’t resist jumping straight in. And let me tell you, friends, this book is worth the hype it’s getting. In fact, it might just be one of the best books I’ve read so far this year.
I want to keep my full review for closer to the release date (don’t worry – I’ll write it up now! Although, I might just want to give this one a reread later in the year anyway) but I wanted to share a bit about it now in case you would like to pre-order it, and because, to be honest, I actually can’t wait that long to talk about it.
So, what is A Girl Called Corpse about? I’ll pop the synopsis from the Allen & Unwin website below, but Corpse is a lonely kid ghost, who has build herself a body from candle wax, and has spent her death living in the roof space of some terrible witches and wondering who she was before. The story felt really fresh to me, there was so much heart, and the voice has an intimacy and humour that immediately grabbed me and sat me firmly in Corpse’s corner. The book deals really beautifully with the themes of belonging through family and found family and friendship, which are all things I love to see in books for this age group. I actually can’t wait to find out what happens in the next book, which is kind of a bummer since book one still isn’t out for a few months!
If some of this is sounding familiar, you might remember that Reece was kind enough to join me here on the blog for a chat about middlegrade books in January – he always has so many fabulous recommendations – you can catch up on our chat here, and also keep up with Reece on his website and Instagram.
Do let me know in the comments if you have this one on your tbr!
Synopsis of A Girl Called Corpse by Reece Carter
‘Find the thing the Witches call a treasure,’ says Old Man, ‘and you’ll get back all those memories you’re missing.’
With a body made of wax, seaweed for hair and polished abalone shells for eyes, Corpse is bound to haunt the Witches’ sea shack forever. She has no memory of the kid she was before she was snatched and ended up on the rock-that-doesn’t-exist.
But the delivery of an unexpected message sets Corpse off on a surprising quest, searching for answers to the old and familiar questions that have filled her not-brain since the day she first woke up a ghost. Questions about her name. Questions about her family.
With only her eight-legged friend Simon for company, Corpse heads into the unknown. There will be danger – cruel Witches, a silver-eyed sea monster and a cunning Merchant with a hungry grin – but Corpse is not afraid. She’ll stop at nothing to uncover the truth about her past.
Only some answers, it turns out, are much closer than she thinks.