I definitely think this is one of Wilson's best books. She's always on good form when she writes about kids who have difficult lives, because she never does it in a patronising manner. Of course, reading as an adult, books like The Bed and Breakfast Star can be a difficult read, because you know the happy ending is temporary and can see that the issues go so much deeper. Writing a book that is completely suitable for junior readers but yet offers something extra to adults is a rare talent... and one Wilson is the master of.
June 13th-14th 2010
I love how Wilson's heroes and heroines (okay, yes, generally heroines with male mates) come from all kinds of socio-economic backgrounds. It's so refreshing.
That said, the ending of this book seemed a little abrupt and a couple of issues that had been raised with regard to the protagonist's relationship with her stepfather and the latter's general behaviour were not resolved, making this quite a dark piece of junior fiction from an adult perspective. I have a feeling that the intended audience would come away thinking that the story has a happy ending, however.
...they might well groan a lot less at the incessant jokes told by the protagonist as well ;)