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Stormchaser is a children's fantasy novel by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell, first published in 1999. It is the second volume of The Edge Chronicles and of the Twig Saga trilogy; within the stories' own chronology it is the fifth novel, following the Quint Saga trilogy that was published later.

Plot summary

Set two years after Beyond the Deepwoods, the protagonist, Twig, is a full member of his father, Cloud Wolf's, sky ship the Stormchaser. When a disastrous encounter with a league ship forces the crew to dispose of their precious cargo, Cloud Wolf has no option but to return to Undertown and arrange a way to repay his debts. Meanwhile, in the city of Sanctaphrax, stormphrax and phraxdust supplies are running low, threatening to leave the floating city able to break free of its chains and permanently pollute the water in Undertown. Against the wishes of the Most High Academe Vilnix Pompolnius, a deal is struck between Cloud Wolf, Mother Horsefeather and the Professor of Light to erase Cloud Wolf's debts if he can return to Sanctaphrax with a supply of Stormphrax from the approaching Great Storm to save both cities from destruction.

Though Cloud Wolf forbids Twig to set sail with the rest of the crew on this dangerous voyage, he is willingly smuggled onboard the Stormchaser by the mutinous Slyvo Spleethe and his accomplice Mugbutt. On approaching the Great Storm, Spleethe and Mugbutt are killed by the result of a failed mutiny and the Stormchaser becomes damaged. The crew abandon ship in the Twilight Woods, except for the captain Cloud Wolf. On landing Twig reunites the crew and prepares to take over his father's mission.

Although Twig tries to maintain his crew's sanity in the mystical twilight woods, Tem Barkwater and Stope Boltjaw are overcome by the evil and are lost. Twig and the remaining crew then make it to the Mire, where they are lured in by the treacherous guide Screed Toe-taker, an ancient Knight Academic driven mad by the Twilight Woods himself. After killing Hubble and Spiker, two members of the crew, Screed is confronted and killed by Twig. The Professor of light is also killed, but not before revealing the secret of safe production of phraxdust. Twig discovers that the Stone Pilot is an unturned Termagent Trog named Maugin (he has a special affection for unturned trogs, due to his experiences in the previous book), who helps Twig to rebuild Screed's old ship, and they find a chest where Screed had been collecting stormphrax from the toes of his victims. During this time, the two form a bond, which is revealed in a later book to be a romantic interest.

With a plentiful supply of stormphrax they rebuild the ship and its flight rock with plans return to Sanctaphrax and overthrow Vilnix Pompolnius, as well as saving the city and telling the Professor of Darkness the secret of phraxdust. The story ends with Twig finding a new crew of his own and on the instructions of Twig's caterbird, travelling over the edge to save Cloud Wolf.

See also

it:Cronache dal bordo


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