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Sweet Clarinet Paperback – 4 Nov 1999

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Paperback, 4 Nov 1999
£120.88 £0.01

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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; New edition edition (4 Nov 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019275050X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192750501
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 829,251 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

James Riordan grew up during the war in his chimney-sweep grandfather's house in Portsmouth. After school he was a barman, waiter, railway clerk, commercial salesman, and dance band musician. During his National Service in the RAF he learned Russian and went on to become Professor of Russian Studies at Surrey University. Besides novels, he has written folk-tale collections, picture books and over 20 academic publications. His first novel for children, Sweet Clarinet, was shortlisted for the Whitbread Children's Book Award and, like his other novels The Prisoner and When the Guns Fall Silent, is based partly on his own wartime experiences.

Product Description

Amazon Review

When Billy is hideously scarred by the bomb that leaves him both homeless and orphaned, his only dream is of dying so that he can be rid of the tremendous pain that the physical and mental scars of the Blitz inflicted. But when a wounded soldier makes him the gift of a clarinet, Billy begins to once more face up to life and a future he once believed held nothing for him.

Sweet Clarinet is an affecting and moving story of darkness and light for young, adult readers. Simple and to the point, yet somehow deeply poetic, James Riordan¹s matter-of-fact approach touches the heart as he tells of Billy's lonely journey to the very pit of despair, bringing him slowly back into a world where music and friendship offer him the sense of hope he thought he had lost as a child in war-torn London. --Susan Harrison --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Riordan skilfully has Billy tell his own moving story, thereby capturing the reader's empathy and creating a compulsion to keep the pages turning (Books for Keeps ) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 2 Feb 2000
Format: Paperback
William is terribly disfigured in a bomb blast and he has to come to terms with his new life. How does he get over his anger? Will people always regard him with pity and look away? Will he ever find someone to love him?
This is a very moving story, which helps us to examine our own prejudices and question our own reactions if confronted by disability or abnormality.
Settle down with a box of tissues and read this extraordinary tale of triumph over adversity.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Beautiful book 21 Oct 2008
By Francesca Lily - Published on
Format: Paperback
Unlike the one other reviewer, I can actually write in full, clear English. And in that English, I shall say that this is a book to be recommended. The main character is well rounded and you start to feel for him throughout the book. It is also written in a very realistic way, with no room for sugar-coating the effects of the bomb burning his skin (especially his face) severely, and also society's reaction to his face, even the adults. If you want a good read, I certainly recommend "Sweet Clarinet".
0 of 5 people found the following review helpful
sweet clarinet 2 Nov 2003
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
this book is really good, no jokes. this book is odd coz it seems 2 be an autobiog, but wen u get nearer the end, its a bit predictable and u find out, that it cudnt all be tru, read it god dammit. ps i dont thik im very gd at reviwing
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