Beetle Queen

Beetle Queen

By Author / Illustrator

M.G. Leonard



Age range(s)



Chicken House Ltd




Paperback / softback




The second book in the bestselling BATTLE OF THE BEETLES series - perfect for fans of Roald Dahl!'Truly great storytelling.' MICHAEL MORPURGO on BEETLE BOYCruel beetle fashionista, Lucretia Cutter, is at large with her yellow ladybird spies. When Darkus, Virginia and Bertolt discover further evidence of her evil, they're determined to stop her. But the three friends are in trouble. Darkus' dad has forbidden them to investigate any further - and disgusting crooks Humphrey and Pickering are out of prison. Hope rests on Novak, Lucretia's daughter and a Hollywood actress, but the beetle diva is always one scuttle ahead ...



I moved straight on to reading Beetle Queen having read the first in this planned trilogy, Beetle Boy. At the end of the first book the reader gets a glimpse of what Lucretia Cutter really is (and I won't disclose this!). She is designing and making dresses for actresses nominated for awards in the Film Festival in Holloywood, but they are dresses with a difference, being made of beetles! Her own dress is a masterpiece I have to say. But Darkus, Virginia and Bertolt are still on her trail, although Darkus's father is not pleased about this and seems to have plans of his own. He disappears again and Uncle Max enables the children to follow Lucretia to Hollywood to try to unmask her. Novak, her 'daughter', who believes Darkus has been killed, finds he is alive and is crucial to the plot to stop Lucretia. In a somewhat manic denouement at the Festival where Lucretia's world-shattering plot is uncovered, the scene is set for the third book. The three resourceful children aided by it has to say very helpful adults in the form of Uncle Max and Bertolt's rather vapid, star struck mother, are strong characters and it is their friendship and understanding of each other which is developed further in this sequel. Various characters appear on the way, including Dr. Yuki Ishikawa. It is rather essential to have read the first book to follow things, as although not all the background is explained. The scenes at The Film Festival are obviously based on the Oscar's and the final scenes seem to have been written with a film script in mind, being very fast paced and full of action and descriptions. This is a hugely enjoyable read, quite unique in having beetles at its centre with real personalities, matched to the children they pair with, and Lucretia's aim of taking over the world by using the beetles to destroy crops, has a big environmental message for young people. I hope the third volume won't be long! 352 pages / Ages 9+ / Reviewed by Janet Fisher

Suggested Reading Age 9+


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