A sequel? Really? Oh yes, and by special request of the Fleming family. Yep, the family of Ian Fleming - author of the original - contacted Frank Cottrell Boyce to revive Chitty and bring it slap bang up to date .. and guess what? There are two more around the corner.
I was so excited to get hold of this book, intrigued as to whether or not this was going to work and if so, then how?!
When Dad of the Tooting family gets made redundant and sees this as a chance to add his great inventions to the house, mum quickly buys him a project to divert his attention - a 1966 campervan. With the help of Jem the entire vehicle is taken apart and put back together again, ready for the family to go off on adventure. But, as you may well have guessed, this doesn't turn out to be just any old adventure ...
The magic, the spark and the comedy are all here. Frank takes the reader effortlessly through adventure after adventure with comic moments, pace and many great characters. The dynamic storyline flies the reader through Paris, Egypt, a cruise ship unlike any other and Madagascar! Phew! The villain is there too - thankfully this one didn't haunt me nearly as much as the Child Catcher from the film version *shudder* Respectful, comic nods to author Ian Fleming via the Aston Martin DB5, are pure genius,
"That spy who drove it before, he made so many enemies that any time we take it anywhere people recognize it and starting shooting at us."
The Tooting family dynamics are brilliantly conveyed. Boyce has created relate-able characters with comic touches - Lucy, Jem and Little Henry all develop during the novel - and each provide something that readers of this novel will relate to.
This is a truly great imaginative story, it doesn't feel in the least forced or contrived as some sequels tend to do. Instead this one has taken the best bits of the original and blended in many superb Frank Cottrell Boyce touches creating a fascinating, page turning adventure in its own right.