British writer born in Austria.
With the memorable characters and plot twists she brings to her best-selling fantasies, Eva Ibbotson has written a hair-raising novel, set in turn-of-the-last-century Brazil.
Maia, an orphan, is sent from England to live with unfamiliar cousins on a rubber plantation in South America. The brave, curious girl and her fierce but kind governess arrive in their new home, each with secret hopes of adventure. These are immediately quashed by the Carters, who hate their adopted land and its inhabitants. They are obsessed with re-creating England in the forest, right down to the watery puddings. It is only through friendship with a mysterious Indian boy (who just might be the heir to a large fortune) and a runaway child actor (who specializes in Little Lord Fauntleroy) that Maia and Miss Minton, her governess, find the excitement they longed for: an unexpected expedition into the heart of the Amazon, in search of a lost tribe and the legendary giant sloth.
Annika is happy living in the servants’ quarters of a house owned by three eccentric professors. She adores Ellie and Sigrid, the cook and housemaid who found her as a baby, abandoned on a church doorstep. In the eleven years since, they have taught her how to bake and clean to perfection. Then one day a glamorous stranger arrives, claiming to be Annika’s mother. Annika is no servant, she learns, but an aristocrat whose true home is an ancient castle. But at crumbling Spittal, Annika discovers that all is not as it seems in the lives of her newfound family…
A hundred years ago, in the Himalayan peaks of Nanvi Dar, the daughter of an English earl is kidnapped by a huge hairy monster. In a secret valley Agatha Farlingham is introduced to a family of motherless yetis and devotes her life to their upbringing. She teaches them to speak, tells them stories and insists on polite manners.
When a Hag, an orphan boy and a troll called Ulf get sent to rescue a princess from an ogre, they expect it to be a fairly standard magical mission. But the ogre is depressed, the princess doesn’t want to be rescued—and the ogre’s dead wife is turning in her grave. The Norns who rule their fates decide to take things in hand—will the Ogre meet a bloody end, or will he get a happy ending?
When little Oliver Smith inherits the gloomy mansion Helton Hall, his scheming cousins, the Snodde-Brittles, are determined to rid themselves of the orphan heir. They have a perfect plan. They will hire some terrifying ghosts from the Dial-a-Ghost Agency to scare the boy to death. But, as in any Eva Ibbotson novel, the fantastic creatures do not necessarily behave as expected-they are a little too human for that. Soon the ghosts, led by a mysterious girl spirit named Adopta, have joined with Oliver against his cousins. But they may have underestimated the depths of the Snodde-Brittles’ evil….
The laughs and frights are thick in this spooky story, which is sure to join Eva Ibbotson’s other books as classics of the genre.
Somewhere in the Atlantic on a mysterious island, three eccentric women care for an assortment of astonishing creatures—not just seals, fish, and gulls, but mermaids, selkies, a couple of ghosts, a very long talking worm, and a boobrie that lays eggs so large, just one will make seventy-two omelets. But caring for so many, even the magical ones, is hard work, and Etta, Coral, and Myrtle are getting older. Perhaps if they kidnapped a few sensible children to help…
Which children the “aunts” choose and what happens to them on the island make for another wildly inventive and funny read by master storyteller Eva Ibbotson.