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4.7 out of 5 stars214
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 3 November 2012
Volume two in what will hopefully be a long series of books telling the story of a fictional school in the Yorkshire Dales, this is an amusing but realistic story, obviously drawing on the author's lifetime experience as a School Inspector. If you enjoyed the first book, then you will love this sequel.
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on 21 November 2012
Trouble at the village school, Good story but must be read in right order of story, I would recommend both books
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on 15 October 2012
Having previously enjoyed the first of this series by Gervase I was really looking forward to reading his second offering. I was not disappointed. The characters are so well drawn that you feel you actually know them and as with the first book I love the apt names he has given each person in the village. The story drew you along and thankfully all the characters ended up as I hoped they would. I was a little surprised to find myself actually feeling a little sorry for Miss Sowerbutts in this book. I hope the village books do not end here as I'd like to see how Danny and some of the others progress.
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on 16 October 2013
This second instalment of Gervase's Barton-in-the-Dale series focuses once again on the fiesty Elisabeth Devine, newly appointed head teacher at the village primary school.

She has only just cemented her popularity amongst pupils, fellow teachers and villagers, than she encounters fresh challenges. There's a move to amalgamate two local schools and Elisabeth has to fight for the new headship with a ruthless rival; and just as Elisabeth and the local doctor are falling for each other, the arrival of Elisabeth's ex-husband and a new female curate proves that the course of true love never did run smooth.

Gervase has the rare ability of making initially dislikeable figures (an embitttered former headmistress, an estranged grandmother who disrupts an adoption) into sympathetic characters, and he intersperses his readable narrative with acute observations of village life.

A witty, warmhearted and wise novel from this master storyteller.
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VINE VOICEon 21 June 2015
I am back for my second term at the Little Village School.

I am coming back to heartwarming characters, gossipy village ladies and some tension. Enough to keep you turning the pages.

The closure of the school seems to have been to dealt with, but now there will be an amalgamation of schools and it seems that the headteacher Elisabeth Devine has more battles to face.

She has drawn out so many of the teachers who will now inspire and encourage the young minds that they are meeting every day, but she has also made them look closely at their own happiness.

One of those young minds Oscar, seems to be challenging as always and gives the school caretaker much to mutter about.

There is of course Danny who you think has found a more settled life into which to grow. It seems someone else has other ideas and the author brings into the story social services and the battles of right and wrong in not just the best education for a child but also the best home environment you can have. It raises questions about what is best for the child?

In this book as we wait to find out how exactly the amalgamation of two schools is going to work and whether the board of governors and local councillors can agree on a solution which doesn't appear to be in their own interests. We learn more about Elisabeth and her son. Progress is made but then something from the past brings back memories and can perhaps disrupt future plans.

Of course this book takes you right into the depths of Yorkshire and the wonderful humour it brings. I much enjoyed it and look forward to finding out more about the school and all the characters which make the village what it is.
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on 10 November 2012
This is a nice follow up to the first book "The Little Village School". We learn about the fate of the school and its Head Mistress Mrs Devine. Mr. Phinn leaves room for a third book that I hope he will consider writing.
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on 7 October 2013
As soothing and relaxing as the previous book. Just the thing when you want to curl up with something undemanding and forget your troubles! However, I think this sequel is less well crafted than its predecessor. In particular, there are long passages all over the book which just provide a recap on events covered by the first book, even sometimes repeating incidents almost verbatim. These are quite tedious to anyone who has read that book already, and even if you haven't, they slow down the current story and in many cases are not really necessary to the enjoyment of this book, but simply pad it out. There are other, more subtle and less intrusive ways of setting a background in place.
I also feel the story is very much 'more of the same' - character types and anecdotes and very reminiscent of those found in Phinn's other books. Which is fine of course if that's all you want! I hope that Phinn's next book will keep the Yorkshire village atmosphere and the school setting, but maybe by a little more innovative in terms of characters and plot.
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on 26 September 2013
Humorous and heart-warming - just as I've come to expect from this author. I'm now intending to purchase more of his books.
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on 11 December 2012
I just enjoy reading about young children at school, particularly in part of the country that I am not too familiar with. There is a tendency because he is a Yorkshireman, for him to overdo the sentiment and perhaps he exaggerates anything attached to living in Yorkshire but I still enjoyed it.
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on 16 September 2015
This is the second book in The Little Village School series. It is just as good as the first one. Elizabeth and Dr Stirling are growing closer, and decide to adopt Danny ( who is friends with Dr Stirling's son James). All goes well, until Danny's maternal grandma (whom he hadn't had contact with for years) decides to contest the adoption, and wants him to live with her in Clayton. The way this situation is handled is a tribute to Gervase's writing style. We also meet Malcolm Stubbins, and Elizabeth gets to know some of her colleagues better. The difficult Mr Gribben(caretaker) is also in the background, along with the extremely intelligent Oscar!
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