cover image Juliet's Story

Juliet's Story

William Trevor. Simon & Schuster, $15 (105pp) ISBN 978-0-671-87442-1

Whitbread Award-winner Trevor's first novel for young readers is metafictional: it is a story about telling stories. Juliet, an Irish girl from County Tipperary, loves Paddy Old's tales, particularly a peculiar one about a man who has no story of his own--until a malicious piece of beef on a spit gives him one to tell. When Paddy dies, Juliet feels lost, but her grief slowly dissipates when her Grandmamma takes her on a fanciful trip from Dublin to the south of France. Along the way she tells Juliet her own unique stories (included here), and while Juliet finds an uncanny affinity with the protagonists, she still sighs, ``I wish I had a story of my own.'' When she meets a toymaker on the beach in France, her wish begins to come true. Trevor has a wonderful knack for whimsical detail and gentle observation, and his sophisticated understanding of the powers of narrative is sheer pleasure. Ages 9-13. (June)