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The Ant Colony

3.55 of 5 stars 3.55  ·  rating details  ·  357 ratings  ·  24 reviews
A stunning new look for the irresistible novel from Guardian-award-winning novelist, Jenny Valentine. Number 33 Georgiana Street houses many people and yet seems home to none. To runaway Sam it is a place to disappear. To Bohemia, it's just another blip between crises, as her mum ricochets off the latest boyfriend. Old Isobel acts like she owns the place, even though it ac ...more
Paperback, 215 pages
Published March 1st 2009 by HarperCollins Children's Books
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I've read a couple of Jenny Valentine's books in the past (Finding Violet Park and The Double Life of Cassiel Roadnight) and a few things have struck me...

1) She is very good at plot. I'm always a bit sceptical when picking up a book labelled as a 'mystery' because I am invariably disappointed. Having been brought up on a rigorous diet of Agatha Christie, I have very high mystery standards and quite like my mysteries to be very mysterious. Jenny Valentine has won me over before by being successf
Harsha Priolkar
This book found me! You know the feeling when you're browsing a bookshop, looking for something to read, although you already have loads of unread books at home, because none of them seems like quite the 'right' read at the time? And suddenly, there it is, staring you in the face, a yellow-green cover with an interesting title and an unusual author's name! So, I bought it of course! And read it from cover to cover in just over two hours. It's that kind of book!

An easy read, simple yet powerful s
The narrative of this book is split between two characters - seventeen year old Sam and ten year old Bohemia. The story is set in London, in a block of flats that house an unusual collection of people. While the language in this book is beautiful and vivid, it does take a little bit to get into. That being said, it keeps the reader guessing the whole way through - I was constantly wondering what it was that Sam did that made him just pack up and leave for London without telling anyone for exampl ...more
Oct 18, 2011 Ape rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: england
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I really enjoyed this book and it is a short quick read at only 216 pages. The book focuses on a 17 year old boy called Sam and a 10 year old girl called Bohemia, with them narrating alternate chapters. There lives are brought together when they are both living at number 33 Georgiana Street. They have both had difficult lives. Bo’s mum barely looks after her, going from man to man and leaving her regularly to survive on her own. Sam is running away from what has happened back at home. We meet th ...more
Hedwig Sondervan
This was not really my type of book, i thought very boring jn the beginning but WOW, the end gave me goosebumps, and not in a good way. What a horrible story. Too bad you never get to find out if Cherry keeps her promises..
Varsha Seshan
I just kept reading it until I had finished! It's one of those books that makes you smile and cry and wonder.
I read one with a different cover illustration, and loved the design of the book too, with ants crawling randomly (or perhaps not so randomly, if Max is to be believed) on pages all over the book.
It was a book that made me feel for the characters after a long time. So many books that I've read recently have concentrated on complexity of plot at the cost of fullness of character. This on
Fauziyyah Arimi
Its not the book for someone who has 50 first-pages rule, BUT if you spare your patience enough you'd get rewarded by the surprise at the end.
Felicitas Träumer
A 17-year-old leaves his home on the country side because he has made a big mistake and can't bear the looks of the people who know. He goes to London to be alone. Then an old lady convinces him to meet the neighbours, including Bohemia, a ten-year-old girl. They become friends and the little girl changes everyone's lives.

An amazingly moving story and definitely also worth reading when not a child anymore...
Naarmate het boek vorderde begon ik het steeds beter te vinden. In het begin dacht ik dat ik ergens overheen gelezen had: Wie is Max? Teruggebladerd, maar ik kon het niet vinden. Aan het eind van het boek wordt alles duidelijk.

Waarom het boek "De mierenkolonie" heet, lees je op blz. 196: Mieren krijgen in hun eentje niet veel voor elkaar, maar presteren samen iets onvoorstelbaars.

En zo is het.
Jordan Valentine
Honestly one of the best books I've read by an amazing author. The pace is never too fast or too slow, there's always something making me want to read more and can finish in a day. She has created some gripping, interesting and lifelike characters, making me feel like I know each character personally.
Would definitely recommend, especially to anyone looking for something after Broken Soup.
jenn valentine is one of the only authors i have resad thatwrites booksso difereent to anyone else, but jast as beautiful. she is a fantastic author and this book is no exception!! each character has there own story entertwined in one house, creating a beautyiful my steriuos book that i reccomend for everyone that likes something different!
Mooie jeugdroman voor wat jongere tieners, over vriendschap en eenzaamheid en schuldgevoel en hoe ermee om te gaan, dat je erdoor jaagt op een uurtje (of twee, voor de tragere lezers). Beetje halfzacht door die mierenmetafoor, maar die perceptie is dan vooral te wijten aan Dennis Cooper en z’n geweldfantasieën hierboven. (***)
Kerem Mermutlu
Was hoping for really good things here, but found the characters very one dimensional and kind of boring. The voice of the little girl was cute, but the main character Sam was nothing. I didn't like this book, but i still wanted to finish it, strange. Anyway, I might read her other books but only from the library.
Catherine  Mustread
Mar 26, 2009 Catherine Mustread marked it as to-read
Recommended to Catherine by: Telegraph
Shelves: teen
Telegraph: The book deals with failing parents and running away, but its positive conclusion prevents it getting too distressing. It is charmingly written and the straightforward language makes it suitable for preteens and young teenagers, a younger audience than that for Valentine’s previous books.
Chloe Shayler
The Ant Colony was a book I really enjoyed.
Narrated by both 17-year-old Sam and 10-year-old Bohemia, they both share their unique stories. The entire situation is what makes this book so interesting and captivating. I highly reccomend it.
Nicely done, Valentine.
Marianne Brouwer
Goed geschreven jeugdroman vanuit het perspectief van verschillende personages waarin de thema's verwaarlozing, drankmisbruik en en weglopen aan de kaak worden gesteld. De vraag die centraal staat is:
'Kun je weglopen uit je leven en opnieuw beginnen'?
This book is for tweens, a friend gave it to me and it's a sweet story. I enjoyed this very quick read- dealt with a lot of serious issues, but I liked the voice of it and the character development.
Pretty good but the ending seemed unresolved. Were Sam's parents happy to have him home? Did he make it up with Max? Did Cherry stop drinking and start looking after Bohemia properly?
Clarissa Amabel
I liked the characters and how the story unfolds. I like how the author described London and Camden Town, and how she compared the city to the country life. Good read!
It's a good read for readers of all ages, although I think it would be considered teen fiction.

I recommend reading Paper Towns by John Green next.
J'ai ressenti trop de tristesse et d'agacement au cours de ma lecture, j'espérais y trouver autre chose. Je suis un peu déçue.
CLV Library
A sad story but an involving one about Sam's chaotic life with her mum.
Like Jacqueline Wilson but better!
Jovita Fernando
Simply splendid .
Nathalie marked it as to-read
May 13, 2015
A added it
May 11, 2015
Its Just
Its Just marked it as to-read
May 08, 2015
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Jenny Valentine moved house every two years when she was growing up. She has just moved house again, probably not for the last time. She worked in a wholefood shop in Primrose Hill for fifteen years where she met many extraordinary people and sold more organic loaves than there are words in her first novel. She has also worked as a teaching assistant and a jewellery maker. She studied English Lite ...more
More about Jenny Valentine...
Broken Soup Me, the Missing, and the Dead Double Finding Violet Park Iggy & Me

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