Takeshita Demons, by Christy Burne

Are you afraid of ghosts and evil spirits, or the black space under your bed? If you are, then put this book down right away and choose another. If I were you, I would choose a book about teddy bears and bunny rabbits, because then there’s a good chance that you won’t be reading about floating heads or evil spirits or any of the other things you’ll find inside this book. If I were you, I’d do that. But for me, it’s already too late.

Miku Takeshita is Japanese and until recently, she and her family lived in Japan with her grandmother, who she calls Baba. Since Baba’s death, the family have lived in England. Baba taught Miku about ghosts and demons and how to protect herself and family from them. Miku’s mum isn’t so sure these ghosts and demons exist. But it’s lucky Miku listened. Because demons are here and they are not here to smell the roses. Miku and her Irish friend Cait must outsmart demons they didn’t know existed. They must also decide who to trust if they are to enter the battle to reclaim Miku’s little brother Kazu. The only weapons they have are their own quick thinking and Miku’s recollection of her grandmother’s teachings.

Takeshita Demons combines present-day England with ancient Japan, when demons and ghosts were part of the everyday. Miku’s grandmother has prepared her to fight the demons that her mother does not believe in, but she never expected to use the knowledge. Miku and her friend Cait are enterprising and spirited young heroes who demonstrate they are a match for any demon. They draw on the strengths of family and friendship in their battles. Miku discovers that she is more like her grandmother than she could have imagined. Miku tells her story in first person, ideal for her recollections of Baba’s advice and teachings. Takeshita Demons is the first title in this new adventure series. A modern introduction to Japanese mythological creatures. Recommended for mid- to upper primary aged readers.

Takeshita Demons

Takeshita Demons, Christy Burne, Siku
Frances Lincoln Children’s Books 2010
ISBN: 9781847801159

review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author

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