Polly Horvath's plots are always a little offbeat - to the point that when I first listened to one of her stories (Everything on a Waffle) I enjoyed it from an adult point of view, but was surprised to find that our children (then probably 7 and 9) also enjoyed it. As Publishers Weekly puts it, Horvath 'possesses the unique ability to make extraordinary events (such as brushes with death) appear perfectly ordinary while extracting something profound from occurrences as run-of-the-mill as a jaunt to the bookstore'. It's the combination of the banal and the fantastic that I thought would be off-putting to children, as her books are not one thing or another - but the bottom line is that how to classify a book really doesn't bother children all that much - they just enjoy (or don't enjoy) each for what it is without needing to define and ...
'Horvath spins another delightfully offbeat yarn, complete with her signature cast of eccentric characters, wacky situations, poignant moments, and snappy dialogue. Another hit.' - Starred, School Library Journal.
'....the steady flow of sour outlooks, ill-humored repartee and self-pitying comments is a bit much, even for Horvath. Some will laugh; some will be put off.....But a new offering from the queen of offbeat is always a welcome holiday. Ages 11-13.' - Kirkus Reviews.
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No Man's Land
by Simon Tolkien
Inspired by the experiences of his grandfather, J. R. R. Tolkien, during World War I.
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