I enjoyed this book far more than an adult should! Theres fun steampunk like gadgets, including human limbs, through out the book. The town of Zombay itself has its own character, with a north side bound over the river by a large bridge to south side. The river ends up playing a key role in the book, showing the power of nature. The citizens of Zombay have all sorts of tales and fears concerning the goblins, who do look quite fierce at times. Its eerily possible for a human to be changed into a goblin.
The story has just enough seriousness to be a little scary for kids, and to hint at darker personalities for adults. The flaming pigeons definitely left an impression. Throughout the adventure, Rownie also learns of the cruel, and sometimes horrible, source of coal a piece of which is needed to animate various mechanical beings, such as the equine that pulls the goblin wagon. Overall, a very fun, engaging book.