Twelve-year-old Henry Hewitt has been living by his wits on the streets of London, dodging his parents, who are determined to sell him as an apprentice. Searching for a way out of the city, Henry lands a position in Hampshire as an assistant to Sir Richard Blackstone, an aristocratic scientist who performs unorthodox experiments in his country manor. The manor house is comfortable, and the cook is delighted to feed Henry as much as he can eat. Sir Richard is also kind, and Henry knows he has finally found a place where he belongs.
But everything changes when one of Sir Richard’s experiments accidentally transforms a normal-sized tarantula into a colossal beast that escapes and roams the neighborhood. After a man goes missing and Sir Richard is accused of witchcraft, it is left to young Henry to find an antidote for the oversized arachnid. Things are not as they seem, and in saving Sir Richard from the gallows, Henry also unravels a mystery about his own identity.
Lisa Doan holds a master’s degree in writing for children and young adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts, sits on the board of the Brandywine Valley Writers Group and is an IPPY gold winner for juvenile fiction. Lisa is a dual citizen of the U.S. and Ireland, has traveled throughout Africa, Asia and Central America, and lived on a Caribbean island. She has backpacked alone from Morocco to Kenya and her top tip on crossing the Sahara Desert is: TURN BACK - YOU HAVE MADE A LARGE MISTAKE. Lisa’s jobs have included Master Scuba Diving Instructor, wall street headhunter, owner/chef of a restaurant, Set Medic for a reality T.V. show, Deputy Prothonotary of a county court and author of middle grade novels. The author’s dream is to hit oil in the backyard, win the lottery or otherwise stumble upon a pile of money. Finding herself suddenly rich, she would buy a series of tiny apartments in far-flung foreign destinations and roam between them. She has yet to win even two dollars in a lottery. So…hopefully the whole hitting oil in the backyard idea works out. (Though this will require a lot of luck as she currently lives in an apartment building in West Chester, PA.)View Author