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Smudge's Mark

3.84  ·  Rating Details  ·  76 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Simon is an OWNO (Orphan with No Options). He lives with his deranged grandfather and a horrible housekeeper, Griselda, who punishes him by making him trim her toenails with his teeth. Unable to remember anything about his mother or father, Simon is haunted by a dream of an eagle, a serpent, and an angel that smells like bubblegum. Then one night, his dreams change. The an ...more
Hardcover, U.S. edition, 352 pages
Published March 2nd 2010 by Simply Read (first published September 9th 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 261)
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Tracy Letts
Sep 01, 2009 Tracy Letts rated it it was amazing
This book was a great read! It kept me interested from start to finish! I can't wait for this author to write her second book!!
Feb 05, 2011 Peggy rated it it was amazing
When I started this book, I really did not think I was going to like it, but it turned out to be an outstanding book. Written in a style similar to the Magyk series, this is the story of yet another boy thrown into another world he knows nothing about who must save the world from destruction. However, there are some interesting twists that make this book different. Simon (nickname Smudge) is an orphan who has no memory of growing up. Evil forces are working to control the basic elements of the e ...more
Eric Newson
Feb 05, 2011 Eric Newson rated it it was amazing
Smudges mark is about the adventures of a boy named simon. Simonis an orphan who has no memory of his past or of his parents. His grandfather is named Horace Mugford and is the only family he has and lives with him and his housemade Griselda. His grandfather has always made Simon draw pictures from his dreams into his notebook. All of a sudden Simon has a strange dream about a woman who he thinks is his mother, telling him that he has a important task to fulfill.Then things get strabger as a str ...more
Mar 29, 2012 Star rated it really liked it
Simon lives with his deranged grandfather and a horrible housekeeper, Griselda, who punishes him by making him do awful things. He has no memory of his childhood or family, but starts having these strange and terribly beautiful dreams. One night, an angel gives him a special object that magically comes through to the real world with him when he wakes up. Griselda sends him off to an orphanage while his grandfather is out and he finds a portal into a world he never knew existed. Now he must fulfi ...more
Dec 16, 2014 Jessica rated it it was amazing
Smudges Mark is great and interesting. I would read this book more then once. I love how he made different characters turn into people that you would never expect to happen. This author is great and I hope she makes a book two.
Dec 30, 2009 Allison rated it it was amazing
It took me a little while to get through this book because of my school schedule, but I really enjoyed it. I'm looking forward to the next one in the series. It held my interest, which is difficult to do when I am not able to read it quickly. The main characters were interesting and developed. The plot was easy to follow while quite detailed. All in all, I really enjoyed the book.

Anyone who enjoys the Series of Unfortunate events or other young adult fantasy will enjoy this book.
Sep 07, 2009 Sara rated it it was amazing
I must say, I was super excited to happen by a Canadian author here on goodreads. And not just any Canadian kind of author, but a writer of fantastical fiction to top it off!
I Absolutely LOVED this book! It was an original and altogether fascinating tale. I am completely enthralled by Claudia's genuine characters. Stories like Smudge's Mark remind me just why I can't get my head out of the children's section of a bookstore. I highly recommend it!
Dec 04, 2012 Lily rated it really liked it
I was sad when I was finished the book because I wanted MORE!!!!!
I love Simons charater and how he is brave but also a wimp~.
An awsome story for people who love adventures and a hint of backstabbing~
I hope to read more soon~
Jul 08, 2012 Kristen rated it really liked it
This one was hard to get into at first, but then surprisingly caught hold of me. Overall, the plot was nice and simple and I started to enjoy the characters, from Simon himself to his grandfather and the housekeeper. Definitely a surprising book all around. :)
Kelly Flanagan
Feb 23, 2014 Kelly Flanagan rated it it was amazing
Well, I honesty thought, 'not another teen book,they're so shallow or angsty!' but darn, this was a great book. I won't even describe it as I would do the story harm, you just gotta read it. It'll be worth it.
Phoenix Hill
Dec 11, 2013 Phoenix Hill rated it it was amazing
I really liked Smudge's Mark because it was adventurist and it had a lot of action. I liked Smudge's character because he didn't give up he just kept trying.
Oliver Neubert
Nov 23, 2011 Oliver Neubert rated it really liked it
Absolutely love this story, from orphan to hero - always a good read, with lots of hope and desire
Michelle Mulkern
I really liked this book. I wish there was a second one.
Mar 02, 2010 Heather marked it as to-read
A First Reads win! Can't wait to read it.
Claudia Osmond
Sep 04, 2009 Claudia Osmond rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Recommends it for: everyone
Okay, so I gave it 5 stars in honor of what I learned:

1) Writing a book is no party at the beach. Unless, of course, you're attacked by sharks, step on a jellyfish, get a sunburn, and fall into the bonfire.

2) Editors are the ones who tell you that the waters are safe and to dive right in; tell you that no, silly, that only LOOKS dangerous, feel it with your toes - it's squishy; make the wooden lounge chair with slats for a seat look inviting and assure you that you're not the kind of person who
Jan 03, 2015 Laura rated it it was ok
This is one of those "orphan-who's-not-really-an-orphan-but-has-a-HIGHER PURPOSE" books. You know right away that there's something wrong with Simon, since his grandfather's nuts, the housekeeper's an incredibly ugly tyrant and he can't remember anything earlier than seven months before. On his birthday he's given a "twencil" (a twig/pencil) that enables him to do some interesting things with his drawings; and, of course, when he's sent away to a hellish orphanage, you just know that he'll someh ...more
Feb 07, 2010 Raelena rated it liked it
Simon has a problem with his memory, and according to his grandpa it is because he was in a terrible accident. One day while his grandpa was at work, Griselda sent Simon off to a school for orphans. There he meets and befriends Gil and leads his new friend into trouble and another dimension where they have to battle evil and save the world.

Smudge's Mark started off kind of slow and kind of weird. I felt that there was so much going on that it was just a mish mash of people and things, which caus
Mar 18, 2010 P. rated it it was ok
This is almost a 3--Osmond writes plots that unfold like a fever dream, and that's a good thing. Reasoning is not necessary here, it's just a scrim to keep the images rolling and each action bumpily bleeding into the next. The worlds in the book have rough scrapey edges and it's satisfying.

I would have liked to see this be a one-volume, self-contained story. It almost gets there. The characters themselves are a little one-note. So it was just okay.
Jul 19, 2011 Rachel rated it it was ok
I will definitely not be interested in reading the sequel that the end of the book suggests is coming. Too many characters in Emogen to keep up with. I also could not stand Grandpa's accent. I get that he talks differently, but reading his speech slowed me down got to be rather annoying.

A lot of the lead-ins like the part where Smudge and Tessa go to face the Stone Dragon. It just seemed like something was missing and we jumped right into it.
Oct 26, 2011 Audrey rated it it was ok

Good for: Younger readers who’ve run out of other stuff to read. Otherwise, it’s been done … Continue reading

May 28, 2010 Lori marked it as to-read
galley from BEA
Kenzie rated it it was amazing
Jul 11, 2016
Maria Castillo
Maria Castillo marked it as to-read
Jun 14, 2016
Meadow rated it really liked it
May 14, 2016
Tara Fulton
Tara Fulton marked it as to-read
Apr 14, 2016
Ezra rated it it was amazing
Mar 24, 2016
birdbrain marked it as to-read
Mar 21, 2016
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Claudia wrote her first novel, Smudge’s Mark, in a closet. (see

She's an only child.

She's a Canadian.

She's married, has three kids, two dogs, and a bearded dragon.

She loves caramel apples!

She's afraid of snakes, sharks and spiders. And the letter "S".

She's an introvert who loves to read and write.

More about Claudia Osmond...

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“Apparently she used to star in movies.
Probably The Bride of Frankenstein. - Simon Mugford”
“We weren't being mauled by lions.
We weren't being tortured with bamboo shoots shoved under our fingernails.
No Chinese water torture.
No burning at the stake.
We weren't even being interrogated under bright lights.
If only.
No, what we endured was a special kind of torture, designed especially for us by The Rat, that made me wish for a bamboo manicure. - Simon Mugford”
More quotes…