This is the first book about thirteen year old Tabitha Baird who at the beginning of the story finds herself having to start at a new school and get uThis is the first book about thirteen year old Tabitha Baird who at the beginning of the story finds herself having to start at a new school and get used to living in her Gran's house with her mum and younger brother. Luckily Tabitha does it all with a smile...most of the time!
This was such a funny, light-hearted and entertaining read. Arabella Weir has created a fantastically irrepressible character who I enjoyed laughing along with, as well as seeing how she extricates herself from one muddle after another. You can't help but like Tabitha. She has a great narrative voice and the book is told in diary style so we get to hear all about her misadventures, both at school and at home.
I liked the fact that although she has some big adjustments going on in her life, she is a pretty positive and upbeat person. Her Dad's no longer living with them because he's an alcoholic but she still tries to give him a chance, even when things start to go wrong. There's a good mix in the book of more serious matters, as well as plenty of humour which I think readers will enjoy.
I have to admit that I adored Basil too, her Gran's westie dog, who is always being made to wear ridiculous knitted outfits. Luckily Basil comes in handy when Tabitha comes across a gorgeous boy also out dog walking which leads to her trying to engineer a proper meeting.
Luckily, there is set to be another book in the series called 'The Endless Trials of Tabitha Baird' which I'm sure will have me laughing out loud as much as this one did. ...more
'Bliss' is a charming story about a young girl who works in her family's bakery. This isn't just any bakery though, this is a magical one where croiss'Bliss' is a charming story about a young girl who works in her family's bakery. This isn't just any bakery though, this is a magical one where croissants are capable of curing people of the flu and muffins may just whip up the sparks of romance. A quick and easy read, the book is full of extraordinary characters, as well as a town where incredible things happen. I really enjoyed it and will definitely be looking out for the sequel. ...more
This is the first book in Sally Gardner's new series and the first case of the Fairy Detective Agency. It's a beautifully packaged book with fabulousThis is the first book in Sally Gardner's new series and the first case of the Fairy Detective Agency. It's a beautifully packaged book with fabulous illustrations by David Roberts which really bring the story to life.
Combining some magical elements reminiscent of well loved fairy tales with a dark centre which will appeal hugely to readers who like it when children save the day and their wicked parents get their comeuppance, 'Operation Bunny' has been described as reminiscent of some of Roald Dahl's best loved stories. While I think this book is actually quite different, I can understand how comparisons could be made between the two.
Sally Gardner's tale features heroine Emily Vole. Emily has an incredible adventure when she becomes acquainted with her next door neighbour Miss String and her human-like cat Fidget. A whole new magical world opens up for her and her life is literally turned upside down. From then on, readers should expect just about anything to happen. There are pink, talking bunny rabbits, fairies, witches, zombie children and magic lamps. Suspend your disbelief because this story will carry you away from reality and into a world of enchantment and adventure.
I found this book a quirky and entertaining read. Emily Vole is an adorable and likable heroine and this is a story spiced with secrets and magic which will appeal hugely to younger readers. ...more
This is a charming and heartwarming story about a young boy who dares to be different. I wouldn't normally have picked this one up because it is predoThis is a charming and heartwarming story about a young boy who dares to be different. I wouldn't normally have picked this one up because it is predominantly aimed at younger readers but I'm so glad that I got the opportunity to read it because it was simply lovely. The perfect book to put a smile on your face at all the exciting and wonderful adventures that our hero Barnaby gets up to along the way.
I should mention that there are also some wonderful illustrations throughout the book by Oliver Jeffers which show Barnaby on his extraordinary journey.
The story is about embracing the things that make you different rather than always trying to change and fit in with everyone else. This is an important message to convey to children reading the book and one which we should all remember.
The book reminded me quite a lot of some of the best Roald Dahl stories where the adults are far from perfect and could actually learn a thing or two from their children. Mr and Mrs Brocket are desperate for their whole family to be seen as normal and one of their mistakes is to value this more highly than the things which make each of them special in their own right and which should be celebrated rather than hidden away.
A pocket sized book with a pocket sized hero, Barnaby Brocket is one of those characters that you'll remember long after reading the final page. He has a whole host of amazing experiences and sees some incredible sights as he travels around the world. He also meets lots of interesting people who teach him some valuable life lessons. He's an inspiring figure who we could all learn a thing or two from.
This is a great book for both children and adults. It is a unique story which is sad in places but ultimately an uplifting tale of daring to dream. ...more