12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 11 May 2000
Two Weeks with the Queen is a wondeful piece of children's literature. It has a wonderful way of presenting issues which would normally be difficult to deal with. Colin, who's brother has been diagnosed with cancer, is certainly a character who children and adults alike can warm to and empathise with. The real emotions dealt with in the book brought laughter as well as tears. The adventures of Colin in London prove to be hysterical and also the quest which which leads him there is thought provoking. The ending of the book leaves the reader with a sense of hope for Colin and for his family but maybe not in the predictable way which people expect. The friends that Colin make in London show the reader that in this big world, there are people who will take a little time to help others even when they are in times need themselves. It gives the reader a restored faith in the goodness and kindness of the human race. Definitely well worth a read.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 15 December 2000
Colin lives with his brother, Luke and his parents in Australia. It's christmas and Colin gets some horrible brown school shoes, where as Luke gaets what he wanted, he also gets hurt and has to go to hospital. Colin has to stay with family over in England while his parents look after luke at the hospital.
Colin is a really good character. Firstly he is upset about not getting what he wanted for christmas. He is very upset about Luke having to go to hospital but copes with it really well. Having to stay with his auntie and uncle is pretty boring but finds loads of things to do.
Th language in the book is mostly things we can understand. Austrailians slang is often used. Jokes are used but most of them are serious things anden't things to laugh about.
My favourite bit is when Luke and Colin are playing cricket in the hospital. They had bed pans and lots of hospital equipment as wickets, balls and bats. I also like the fact that Colin is always thinkling as ideas to help his younger brother Luke.
I recommend this book for people at the age of 11-13 years. It was one of the best books I've read this year
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 9 November 2006
I must have read TWO WEEKS WITH THE QUEEN about 6 years ago now (I was about 10) and where I might have forgotten details of the plot and the names of some of the characters it's still a book that I remember and love.
It has a strong, charismatic and honest main character (Colin) that's little brother is currently dying of cancer. He is sent away to England, as his parents think it will be less stressful than watching his brother die. Colin resolves to find the Queen's own doctor and cure his little brother. On the way he meets a gay man who's lover is also dying. A strong friendship begins as they each face the worst.
It's a story with relationships, love, death, prejudice, terminal diseases and hope. Told with humour and honesty through the eyes of a young boy just trying to save his brother.
A must read for anyone.
on 3 May 2013
Two weeks with the queen reivew
I liked this book because it is funny but it has a serious story line of things that could be happening to someone at this moment.
At the start of the book we are introduced to Colin, a very ungrateful and selfish boy. His parent's had brought him school shoes for Christmas and he hates them. Colin feels ingnored because he wanted a microscope and his brother Luke got exactly what he wanted. He thinks that his parents care more about Luke.
But when Luke falls ill, Colin steps up and grows more mature. He has no idea what is happening but he is certain that everything is going to be fine. When Colin is told he has to go to England and stay with his Aunt and Uncle for a while he is determind to find the worlds best doctor to save Luke. Colin doesn't give up even when one paln doesn't work he perseveres and tries a new one. This is a very touching story about a boy that would do anything to help his brother get better, with failure not being an option.
I think this book would be suitable for children 10+ because it has serious illnessess, like Cancer, that younger readers my not understand. I recomment it for everyone over that age though.
A book that is similar is The Fault In Our Stars because the characters have or have had some type or Cancer ( Hazel-main character, Augustus Isaac, ect.) There is a big shock at the end but I'll let you read it to find out what happens. It is aimed at older children (T or T+) because it has lots of difficult word but is very enjoyable!
on 23 August 2010
I chose to read this book as the title sounded interesting and it had good comments from people who had already read the book, describing it as funny, moving, wise and exciting. The blurb on the back of the book was interesting as it was in the form of a letter addressed to the Queen, from Colin. It describes Colin's situation and why he requires the attention of the Queen. From reading only the blurb, you realise that the book is going to touch on sensitive issues, and in this case, cancer of Colin's younger Brother Luke.
This is a fiction book, which has funny moments as well as dealing with difficult subjects with skill and great respect. The book is set in Australia which is where the author has lived since he was 16. The front cover is interesting and really depicts what the story is about. There is the land of Australia where Colin lives, and the land of England, and where the Queen lives, and a plane going from Australia to England, which may hint to the reader that there is some travelling in the book.
The main character Colin is Australian, so some of the language choices reflect that, such as the use of the words `crook', `dill' and `g'day'. The book is written in 3rd person and focuses mainly on what Colin is thinking or doing. Throughout my reading of the book, I felt that I got in to the mindset of Colin, and believed whatever he believed. For instance, when Colin firmly believed that Luke would be ok, and that the Australian doctors were being slack so did I, although I knew really that Australian doctors are as good as the English ones, and if a doctor says that someone is going to die, it is not a joke and they mean it.
The journey that Colin takes to England and the events that he gets up to there are followed closely by the reader. He tried writing to the queen, breaking in to Buckingham Palace, breaking out of the house, going to the top cancer doctor in London and even thought about going to South America to get a tribe to tell him the cure for cancer. The attempts Colin makes to try to get a doctor or someone to save his brother's life are admired. As the reader, I believed that he would find someone or something to save Luke. Like Colin, I didn't want to believe that there was nothing that could be done.
While in England Colin stays with his Auntie Iris, Uncle Bob, and Cousin Alistair. Having these characters in the book brings some humour to the story, which is needed, when the theme of the book is quite dark. Alistair especially is a funny character. He is very safety and health conscious, due to his very over protective parents, and this makes for a funny sub plot. Auntie Iris constantly thinks he is sickening, and Alistair takes a couple of trips to the doctors in a matter of a few weeks, although the only thing really wrong with him is that he has dandruff! Alistair is scared of going to town by himself for fear of hurting himself, and of course because his mum doesn't let him go. The moments that made me laugh out loud in the book normally focussed around when Alistair was speaking, especially the part where he imagined Colin sitting on the end of the Queens bed, and her waking up and having such a fright that she wet herself! Moments like this are needed in the book and work well to keep the story more light-hearted.
Another two characters that Colin met in England were Ted and Griff. Ted was in much the same situation as Colin, as he also knew someone who was suffering from terminal cancer, and that person was Griff. Griff is Teds partner in the book, hence they are a homosexual couple. Griff also was suffering from AIDS and during the book he dies from it. This is quite an emotional part, and has to be dealt with sensitively. This storyline can also provoke a lot of questions from children, which again will need to be tackled with a great deal of sensitivity. Colin gets to know these two characters well in the book, especially Ted, with whom he develops a good friendship. It is lovely to read that Colin is doing all he can to not only help his brother Luke, but also make Ted and Griff's final weeks together really special.
The end of the book is the saddest but yet happiest ending to a book I have read in a long time, and I could feel my eyes well up as I read the last sentence. It finishes at just the right moment, where Colin realises that sick people need to have their family around them, and so he flies back to Australia to see Luke. The story ends with Colin arriving at the hospital and seeing Luke who is so happy to see his brother, and Colin realising that this is where he should be. However, as the reader, you know that Luke has terminal cancer and will inevitably die. This is why it is good to finish the book at this point, on a happy ending, as carrying on the book would have been too sad for many readers to handle, especially children. I also think that it is nice that Colin decided that he wants to go to university when he is older to try and find a cure for cancer.
I have really enjoyed reading this book, and I am not ashamed to say that it made me laugh and cry, which I think makes for a great book that really gets the reader involved with the storyline as it develops. I am not sure which book this reminds me of if any, but I did read a Jacqueline Wilson book about two friends, and where one friend dies, and how the one left manages to cope, so that book had a similar plot.