Blue Like Friday

Siobhan Parkinson, Author . Roaring Brook $16.95 (154p) ISBN 978-1-59643-340-3

Like a funny cousin of Siobhan Dowd's The London Eye Mystery (Reviews, Dec. 3, 2007), this Irish novel introduces a boy whose thinking runs on its own idiosyncratic track, in his case because he has synaesthesia. In the opening lines, narrator Olivia is explaining to her best friend that blue is a bad color for a kite: “Think about it.... Where does a kite spend its time?” Hal refuses to answer, and later counters that the kite must be blue because Friday is “a light pretty blue. With frills.” The exchange sets the stage for the type of logic—and the dynamic—that guide these two friends as they pull a mean prank on Alec, Hal's mother's live-in boyfriend—never guessing that Hal's mother is one step ahead of them the whole time, with a plan of her own to help Hal come to terms with his father's death years ago and with Alec's presence. Parkinson (Something Invisible ) knows how to bring together the comic and heartbreaking without ever manipulating readers, and her characters have a full dose of humanity at their disposal. Memorable, wise and thoroughly entertaining. Ages 11-14. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 03/24/2008
Release date: 03/01/2008
Genre: Children's
Ebook - 160 pages - 978-1-4299-8287-0
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