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The Borribles

4.05 based on 367 ratings & 33 reviews on Goodreads.com

16 January 14


A small band of childlike runaways take on a bold mission across a dangerous city...

London's forgotten corners hide a rebellious community of small outcasts - the Borribles. And apart from their pointed ears, their childlike appearance allows them (mostly...) to say one step ahead of the authorities. They live by their wits, high spirits and a few Borrible laws -- the chief one being, 'Don't Get Caught!' This motto will stand them in good stead, as the Battersea Borribles prepare for their greatest adventure of all.

One night, they discover one of their ancient enemies, a giant rat-like Rumble, in their traditional territory. They've fought hard for their dwellings in the city's forgotten corners, so clearly something must be done. Fearing an invasion, an elite group of Borrible fighters set out on what will become known in legend as the Great Rumble Hunt. So begins the first of three epic adventures in Michael de Larrabeiti's classic trilogy, where excitement, violence, low cunning, greed, generosity, treachery, and bravery exist side by side.

This ebook edition features extra material, including some not seen in any previous editions of the book. For example, you'll find China Miéville's introduction and an illustration drawn by Michael de Larrabeiti, as well as a map of the London territories explored. Amongst other pieces of interesting background, you'll also discover colourful descriptions of the wonderful cast of characters.

In the media

The adventures of The Hobbit and the rabbits of Watership Down
are more than once called to mind . . . and de Larrabeiti has brought
something of these mythologies to the street markets and the backalleys
of South London and the thronged waterways of the Thames

The Times
An exceedingly well-told adventure. The journey up the Thames and the noxious Wandle is epic
The Economist
Among my most favourite examples of both YA literature and literature about London . . . I sincerely hope that you give these books a try. They are full of romance - in the sense of far-away places that beckon you away from the dreary normalcy of your daily live - adventure, thrills, chases, fights, camaraderie, nobility, betrayal: everything you could possibly ask for in kids' literature
Cory Doctorow