Buttercup Sunshineâ€™s world gets weirder and spookier in the second book in the Briarâ€™s Cove Series, as she tries her best to save the world from zombies despite plenty of distractions from a bumbling mailman, mutant bunny rabbits, and a certain Dr. Victor Frankenstein. The deliciously dry humour and silly sight gags thatÂ I loved so much in the first bookÂ are back, as is everyoneâ€™s favourite secret agent handler Barry the toad.
In addition to Colin Mulhernâ€™s sense of humour and his clear affection for the macabre, one of the things I appreciate most about his series is how much he obviously respects kids. Nearly every encounter Buttercup has with an adult shows something that all kids know but that many adults seem to forget: grown-ups donâ€™t listen to kids, especially when it comes to the really important stuff. Buttercup is trying to prevent the actual end of the world, but the adults she encounters canâ€™t hear what sheâ€™s telling them because theyâ€™re too wrapped up in their own agendas to listen to her.
Theyâ€™re also too blinded by the idea of the â€œgood little girlâ€ to take her seriously. They look at an adorable girl in a pretty dress and see someone docile and frivolous, rather than the chainsaw-wielding zombie expert we know her to be.
The zombie threat still looms over the story, but this tale is a fun detour from the events of the first book. Mulhern seems determined to make Briarâ€™s Cove as wacky and creepy as possible, and itâ€™s a thrill to see Buttercup Sunshineâ€™s universe expand to include classic horror characters and new monsters to defeat. Buttercupâ€™s next step in her quest to save the world will take her straight through the most hilariously named swamp in existence, so I canâ€™t wait to see what she faces in the third instalment. The wit, charm, and chaotic spookiness of this series make it one of my favourite things in bookstores right now. If you havenâ€™t checked it out yet, youâ€™re in for a real treat.