37 of 37 people found the following review helpful
Utterly, a gem!,
This review is from: Clarice Bean, Utterly Me (Paperback)
My seven year old daughter read this in an afternoon and utterly loved it. I read it too with a good deal of amusement and much admiration for the brilliant writing and illustration. Lauren Child presents the fun and frustrations of childhood with great wit and sympathy and a total lack of sentimentality. The first person narrative beautifully evokes the language of the primary school playground, while giving an inimitable, child's take on her own and the adult world.
As a child, my daughter could relate to Clarice's trials with her family and teacher (little brother Minal's bad jokes struck a particular chord!), her relationships with her friends and enemies, and her struggles with the dreaded class project. As a parent, I enjoyed the insights into the life of primary age children, the way in which relationships develop, the ambitious plans that don't quite work out, the misinterpretation of events, the independent thought often underestimated by adults.
Clarice's story is interwoven with that of Ruby Redfort - the heroine of a series of a much loved mystery-adventure books Clarice herself is reading. The two stories develop with Clarice and her friends using Ruby-like skills to solve the mystery of the missing trophy and complete their project. My daughter said she wished the Ruby Redfort books really existed, as they sounded excellent.
But perhaps the clearest compliment comes from her interpretation of Clarice's age, cleverly never stated. "I think she must be seven or eight", says my daughter, "Just like me!"
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Initial post: 2 Jul 2013 15:14:58 BDT
Jonah Wilson says:
My daughter was hooked on Charlie and Lola for many years and when she graduated to more "grown up" books this was perfect too. Lauren Child has the rare gift of being able to appeal to children and adults at the same time - but not necessarily on the same level.
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