Who am I?
- Book Eating Girl
- Mmm books - they taste good in my brain. So I decided to work in publishing and feed my habit. So now for a living I read wonderful children's books and tell everyone how great they are. It's called publicity! Many thanks to Oliver Jeffers for the name inspiration and header image.
Monday, 2 January 2012
Carnegie meal number 5 - My Sister Lives on the Mantlepiece by Annabel Pitcher
The plot follows 10 year old Jamie whose sister Rose was killed in a terrorist attack. Her twin sister Jasmine survived and is left to live within their now fractured family with Jamie. Their father has become bitter and angry and often blames their mother, who is distant and disconnected from the family. The father has also grown to distrust any muslims, believing them all to be terrorists and is struggling to cope with his grief through heavy drinking.
The story is told very genuinely from a child's point of view - in this it reminded me of one of this year's big adult books, Room by Emma Donoghue. His voice is very innocent and it's heartbreaking to see the family's disfunction through his eyes. As the children left behind in tragedy, Jamie and Jasmine find themselves more neglected and invisible rather than more cared for. With a move to the countryside, Jamie also finds himself forming a tender young friendship with a girl at his new school, but there's just one problem: Sunya is a Muslim.
Moon Pie by Simon Mason which has a similar family set-up and is equally wonderful!
I do think this book really deserves all the praise it has received - ignore the attention grabbing stuff about terrorism (and sorry, but I'm not a fan of this cover at all...) and read it as a sensitive and touching examination of a family in trouble.
My Sister Lives on the Mantlepiece is out now in paperback and is long listed for the Carnegie Medal.