Sunday, July 01, 2007


I picked up this gem of a book at BEA this spring.

Floss, a.k.a. Flora, is having a birthday. When she wakes up, her mum, step-dad Steve, and half-brother Tiger (a.k.a. Tim) are in her room, giving her gifts. She gets five gifts, all wrapped in lovely pink and silver paper. Her mum always makes things look so nice. "Hurry up", she is told. Floss receives an outfit (a pair of jeans and a pink top with a koala on it), blue trainers with pink laces, gel pens and stationery, a pink trolley style suitcase, and a cuddly animal (kangaroo with a joey). Sense a theme?

Then Floss' mum drops the bombshell. They are moving to Sydney, Australia for Steve's new job.

The full impact takes a moment to hit Floss. What about her dad? She sees him on weekends and helps out at his greasy spoon cafe. He may not be as successful as Steve, but in Floss' eyes, he can do no wrong. But mum insists that Floss come to Australia, and she even makes Floss do the deed of telling dad about the move.

At the same time, she can feel her best friend Rhiannon pulling away. Rhiannon's not very nice, but Floss desperately wants to remain best friends. Even when Rhiannon is so mean to Susan Potts who seems pretty interesting to Floss.

What follows is a story of parents who don't always do the best thing, friends who aren't so friendly, chip butties, and believing in oneself.

Jacqueline Wilson is such a great writer for tweens. She really gets that stuck feeling that so many kids have. Her characters are authentic, and the story flows along effortlessly.

A fun summer read!

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