COLLEEN’S 2020 #BOOK #REVIEWS – “Jack Hughes & Thomas the Rhymer, Book One” BY AUTHOR, Paul Andruss, @Paul_JHBooks

Featuring Your Next Weekend Read!

About this Book

Fairies took his brother…

When Jack sees a sinister woman kidnap his bother Dan, he knows his parents will never believe him. Nor will the police. Not when he says Dan vanished into thin air. If Jack wants to see Dan again, he has to save him. And not just him …

If he ever wants to find Dan, first he must save Thomas the Rhymer from a wicked enemy.

Bravely embarking on a rollercoaster adventure into the dark fairy realm, Jack and friends face monstrous griffins and brooding tapestries with a life of their own, learn to use magic mirrors and travel on ley lines that whip them off faster than sound

Even if he returns Thomas the Rhymer to his selfish fairy queen, she might make Jack her prisoner. With the odds stacked against him, can Jack succeed in finding and freeing Dan?

Or will he lose his brother forever?


The trilogy’s written, so I’ve reread “Jack Hughes and Thomas the Rhymer,” to reconnect with the characters. Stay tuned, because I’ll be reviewing the other two books soon. Now, forget everything you thought you knew about faeries!

This fantastic story delves into one of my favorite subjects, faeries! Not only was it geared toward the YA genre, but it also included a fair amount of historical facts to make the story shine. Those historic details make this book unforgettable.

When Jack’s older brother Dan disappears before his very eyes, he’s stunned by the mysterious circumstances of his departure. That Jack witnessed the strange abduction and doesn’t tell his parents only adds to his troubles. Jack’s mother is suffering from a chronic illness and his greatest hope is that the situation will rectify itself, and Dan will come home on his own.

One night, Jack receives a cell phone call from Dan, and when he answers, there’s no one on the line. He tries to tell his parents and the police the truth about what happened, but every time he opens his mouth to speak, his throat closes up and he’s unable to utter a single word. Faery glamours? Could be!

In the meantime, Jack notices a dirty tramp hanging around his house who only speaks in rhyme. It becomes apparent that no one can see the tramp but Jack and his friends, so he enlists them to help him solve the mystery behind his brother’s disappearance.

Jack, Ken, and Catherine become entangled in the magical kingdom of the faeries. They learn about traveling by ley lines on faery roads. They also experience firsthand the deterioration of the faery kingdom. At one point, Catherine disappears into a living faery tapestry. Soon, the truth about the land of faery is revealed to the kids. Believe me, there’s plenty of magic and suspense to keep you reading long into the night! At least, I did!

Let me just say that this is one of the most imaginative books I have ever read about the good neighbors. There are some special scenes involving one of the faery queen’s and the female character, Catherine, that captured my imagination! The author’s attention to detail and the world-building in faeryland is worth drawing your attention to. Andruss writes as if he has first-hand knowledge of how to deal with faery royalty!

Jack’s friends are reminiscent of the characters in the Harry Potter series, and I had no problem connecting with their personalities. The plot is brilliant, although I had a hard time separating fact from fiction. That’s what I call good writing!

You will find this book on and soon to be listed (along with the sequels) with the independent Scottish publisher, Black Wolf Books. You will find a delightful musical rendering of characters and places from the book HERE. I’ve included my favorite for your reading pleasure below featuring the mysterious Elphame Wood.

Elphame Wood.mp3

“Elphame Wood—speaks for itself, really. The dissonant chords and drum-beats are interrupted by fanfares to remind you that you are in Queen Sylvie’s kingdom. In the first chapter, Sylvie calls Jack ‘Frere Jacques’ and her rhyme has the same syllable scheme as the song. I used an incomplete, minor-key version of Frere Jacques as a recurring bass theme to add to the sinister mood.”

 Music  for Jack Hughes & Thomas the Rhymer, by Patrick Hartnett

I think children and adults of all ages will enjoy this magical tale. Do you love magic and all things faery? Then have a read, because this book will keep you entertained for hours.


*I follow the Amazon Rating System*

Colleen's Book ReviewsRating System

About the Author

Paul Andruss was born and raised in Liverpool. The city’s legendary Scouse wit and dogged stoicism left its mark. Keen to get out into the world, Paul dropped out of college at 17. A year later he was taking exams at Night School, while working in the local Tax Office. On the grounds that anything was better than work, he applied to study Psychology at Liverpool University. Considering his grades (just plumb lazy) no one was more surprised than he when they accepted his application.

After graduation, Paul worked near the romantic Lake District, so beloved of William Wordsworth and Beatrix Potter. No, not Harry’s mum, Peter Rabbit, and Jemima Puddle-duck’s. He worked in Manchester and London before moving to Bodrum in Turkey. 

To finance a passion for exploring the heartland of the Ancient Greek Empire, Paul wrote short travel articles focusing on the history and myths of ruined cities and temples. He began illustrating the pieces, using Photoshop to remove power lines and the odd Esso sign from his photographs of ancient sites.

Returning to the U.K. to focus on writing and illustration, he settled in the foothills of the Brecon Beacons. Paul is the author of the Young Adult magical realism trilogy, the Jack Hughes Books, and the forthcoming (very adult) Finn Mac Cool – a gritty, raunchy mythological saga. He has also written a number of short stories and novellas. All scheduled for release with exciting new, independent Scottish publisher, Black Wolf Books.

For more information, visit
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Listen to music the novel inspired:

How to Connect with the Author


TWITTER: @Paul_JHBooks

Paul Andruss, Buy: Amazon UK And: Amazon US 

Follow Paul: Goodreads 


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30 thoughts on “COLLEEN’S 2020 #BOOK #REVIEWS – “Jack Hughes & Thomas the Rhymer, Book One” BY AUTHOR, Paul Andruss, @Paul_JHBooks

  1. Dear Colleen, thank you for loving the book. It means a hell of a lot to me simply because you are you and I know you love what you love. As I read your kind words part of me was pinching myself saying: Wow this sounds great…. did I really write that? It is a privledge to see my work through your eyes. I cannot tell you what how much your thoughts mean to me. Honoured. Paul xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Shucks Debby! Actually you say I am a most expressive writer and that is the best comment I can come up with!!! Dear me I think you will be revising your good opinion…. and what’s more I don’t blame you! PXXXXX

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Well, it was certainly worth the effort Debby. Plus I have a novella coming out Ollywoodland- (Sally helped in the early drafting stages) Ollywoodland is certainly not child friendly. I would not allow my neice or nephew to read it – And one’s twenty seven while the other is thirty with a child. The older I get the more prudish I become. Loads a luv Paul xx

        Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes you are right Liz, It adds a jangling off- kilter tone which I love. It sums up Rosie who on the surface is like every one’s idea of a typical mum yet there is so much more about her. Plus one of my favourite theme tunes as a kid was The Addams Family so definitely a harpsichord fan!

        Liked by 1 person

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