Have you ever wanted to be in a movie? Kip gets this chance when he meets the mysterious Mr Lazarus in Philip Caveney’s latest book, Night on Terror Island. Kip’s dad owns the Paramount Theatre, a small movie theatre that is under threat of going out of business because of the big multiplex cinemas that have popped up. Kip loves the Paramount and helps his dad out whenever he can, making the popcorn, selling candy and the tickets. Just when things are really bad and their projectionist decides to retire, the myterious Mr Lazarus appears and offers to take up the job and turn things around. Something isn’t quite right with Mr Lazarus though; he knows things he shouldn’t about Kip and his family and he can make things appear out of thin air.
As Kip gets to know Mr Lazarus he uncovers the truth about this strange man and Mr Lazarus shows Kip his secret invention. The Lazarus Enigma is a special machine that can project people into movies. Kip thinks this sounds amazing, but when you’re in a film, everything is real: real bullets, real swords, real monsters. If you don’t get out by the time the closing credits roll, you’ll be trapped in the film forever! When Kip’s sister gets transported into a horror film called Terror Island, it’s up to Kip to go into the film and get her back.
Night on Terror Island is a gripping, fast-paced story full of action, adventure, magic, hungry saber-toothed tigers and killer Neanderthals. It’s clear that Philip Caveney loves movies and the magic that they bring to children and adults. He’s perfectly captured the desire to want to be inside the world of movies. I’m a bit like Kip because I’d rather be transported into a comedy or a children’s movie, rather than a horror. My favourite thing about Night on Terror Island though has to be the character of Mr Lazarus. He’s such a mysterious character and I’m still not sure whether he is totally good or whether he is a little bit sinister. I feel like Philip didn’t quite tell us everything about Mr Lazarus, which is why I liked him so much. I’d love to read more about Kip and Mr Lazarus’s adventures in the world of the movies so hopefully Philip Caveney writes some more about them.
8.5 out of 10