Monday, July 22, 2024

Keedie by Elle McNicholl

 



2024   

teen, lower secondary, upper primary   key Stage 2, Key Stage 3, ages 9-11, ages 10 -13, McNicoll Elle,

Keedie and her twin Nina become fourteen years old during the course of the story and are facing challenges that being that age brings.  They have grown apart. Keedie is a little different from most girls her age. And then there is their younger sister Adeline (Addie).

Both Keedie and Adeline are autistic. So is Keedie’s friend  Bonnie.

There are bullies at the Keedie’s school and she finds a way of dealing with them that is far more effective than anything the school faculty offers.  Keedie actually makes some money by offering her services to fellow students who are being bullied. She aims to do this in a none-violent way.    

Sadly the money is not enough to put down a deposit to send Addie to a very special private school.

She realises anyhow that even though the way she worked with the bullies was very effective, she shouldn’t have taken money for the service.

Keddie is also completely honest about the village’s ancestor, Duncan Juniper. She uncovers the truth about him in the public speaking competition. He was in involved in slavery, he had a negative attitude towards the poor and he called for the execution of any Scots who rebelled. He was, in fact, yet another bully.    

There is tension throughout between her and Nina. Nina’s new circle of friends don’t approve of Keedie.  Yet a strong bond remains between the siblings and both of them adore Addie.

Despite her social awkwardness, Keedie has some good friends, her family and a couple of the more enlightened teachers are on her side.  

There are notes about the author, the book cover illustrator and the publishing company at the end of the book.

The book is 207 pages long and uses a blocked text and an adult serif with difficult   ‘a’s and ‘g’s.   Some of Keedie’s own language is quite sophisticated. The text is double spaced. 

 

See on Amazon  

Note, this is an affiliate link and a small portion of what you pay, at no extra cost to you,  may go to Bridge House Publishing.  

 

Monday, July 1, 2024

The Ice Children by M. G. Leonard, illustrated by Penny Neville-Lee

 


2023 

Bianca and her younger brother Finn argue over a glittery book that Finn has taken from the library. Then five year old Finn is found frozen in a local park. Gradually more and more children turn up frozen in the park.

Bianca realises it is to do with the strange book which it turns our never was in the library catalogue.  Each frozen child has a copy of the book.  She finds the factory where the books are made and meets the strange team of twins Pitter and Patter, Jack (Frost) and Quilo who disguise themselves as one grown-up man.  

Bianca manages to obtain a copy of the book; she too is frozen and is taken to the land of Winterton. Here she meets the Snow Queen who had taken a liking to her brother. Yes, here are echoes of the Hans Christian Anderesen story and also of the Narnia chronicles. And just as in Andresen’s story, the ice children have a shard in their hearts.

Winterton is a magical place with fairground rides, hot chocolate fountains and marshmallows that grow on trees.    

The Snow Queen is dying because of climate change.  Winter is disappearing. And if something doesn’t happen to reverse the warming of the planet all of the children with the splinters in their hearts will die at the time of the winter solstice. They will know nothing of it but will continue to live happily in Winterton.

Bianca finds another way and shows the grown-ups what they must do. The children are unfrozen and returned to their families, all determined to fight climate change and save winter and the Snow Queen

There are some monochrome pencil illustrations throughout.

There is a little information about both the author and the illustrator at the end of the book.  

The text is quite dense, blocked and in a serif font with difficult ‘a’s and ‘g’s.  It is double-spaced. 

Find your copy here  

Note, this is an affiliate link and a small portion of what you pay, at no extra cost to you,  may go to Bridge House Publishing. 

 

Keedie by Elle McNicholl

  2024    teen, lower secondary, upper primary     key Stage 2, Key Stage 3, ages 9-11, ages 10 -13, McNicoll Elle, Keedie and her twin ...