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Tall Story (Lib)(CD) Audio CD

4.7 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Listening Library
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307968758
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307968753
  • Product Dimensions: 38.9 x 20.1 x 11.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,514,610 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Starred Review, School Library Journal, March 2011:
"Contemporary Tagalong and British vernacular enhance the brother/sister narration and enliven the depiction of cultures. In her first young adult novel, Gourlay offers an appealing blend of diverse characters, emotional conflicts, well-paced action, and an upbeat finale. The challenges facing separated, immigrant families and the universal teen desire for acceptance and respect ring true."

"From the Hardcover edition." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

A warm, funny and moving novel that will have you in fits of laughter one minute and in tears the next. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Andi's a 12-year-old basketball fanatic who dreams of playing point guard but is considered too short. Her half-brother Bernardo lives with his aunt and uncle in San Andrea, a small village in the Philippines. Bernardo's waited for years for a visa so he can join his mother, step-father and half-sister in Britain. One day, it finally arrives.

However Bernardo, his aunt and uncle have been keeping a secret from Andi's mum. A big secret. Bernardo is 8 feet tall and his village believes that he's a modern version of Bernardo Carpio - a legendary giant who saved the village from destruction by an earthquake.

Andi's life is turned upside down by Bernardo's arrival, not least when she's moved to a new school - one without a girls' basketball team. Similarly Bernardo's trying to come to terms with life in a strange country and his guilt at leaving his village - including best friend Jabby - behind.

Candy Gourlay's debut novel is a charming tale about accepting differences and superstition. It moves deftly between Bernardo's move to London and his life in San Andrea a small village riddled with superstition and populated with memorable characters, including best friend (and basketball fan) Jabby and the sinister witch Nena. Gourlay portrays the village with affection and what's refreshing is the loyalty that Bernardo has to it - even keeping a horrible Velcro suit specially tailored for him.

Bernardo is sweet-natured - gentle, loving, bewildered by his surroundings and struggling to deal with his condition. The betrayal he feels when Jabby wants him to play a basketball match because a giant will sell tickets is very touching, as are his attempts to reach out to the younger half-sister who he cares deeply for.
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Comment 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
A deft and beautiful piece of storytelling. Basketball-mad Andi, and her giant of a brother, Bernardo, jump off the page. They are worlds apart - upbringing, schooling, clothes but the long and the short of it is that they are bound together by the imperfect love of family.
The story weaves and dodges between two countries and cultures without missing a beat. You feel for Andi, she has a lot to contend with; new brother, new house, new school. You feel for Bernardo; new sister, new house, new school. Their differences are highlihghted in the way they deal with these experiences. The fabulous tale of Bernardo Carpio, the belief in the power of witches keep a tight hold on Bernardo even when he's in London. Andi's efforts to be on the basket ball team and be a good sister are admirable and touching.
Its funny too, all over the place; Andi's mum for example is wonderfully drawn,engaging and pretty embarrassing; as when she meets Bernardo at the airport with the blindingly unnecessary, 'He's so tall! He's so tall!'
I read this quickly, wanting to know what was going to happen to Andi and Bernardo. I'm happy to report that the plot runs towards a deeply satisfying conclusion. This is a fine novel, big hearted and cleverly told. Read it.
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Format: Hardcover
Full disclosure - I'm a friend of Candy Gourlay's, so therefore potentially biased! But I don't have to recommend Tall Story because my friend wrote it, because it stands alone as a beautifully vibrant modern fable. It's a small book about big things - big in the case of Bernardo, the eight-foot-tall hero and equally large in its themes of destiny and responsibility. I'll have to admit to preferring the voice of Andi, Bernardo's wonderfully sparky sister, but the twin perspectives of the story contrast and intertwine wonderfully. The book reaches a tense climax that has one foot in the real world and another in magical realism, an ending that is very appropriate and very satisfying.

This is a book that I can hold up and be proud to say "I know her!" I will be watching Candy's writing career with great interest!
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By TeensReadToo TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 13 Jun. 2011
Format: Hardcover
Standing over 8 feet tall with size 22 shoes, Bernardo has always felt like somewhat of an outcast. While his mom, stepfather, and half-sister live in England, Bernardo lives in the Philippines in hopes of making it back to England one day. When his wish comes true, however, he has a hard time dealing with the hustle and bustle and unfamiliar feel of his family and home.

Will he be able to adjust?

Amandolina has always lived in England and has only met her older half-brother once when he was six years old. When she sees how tall he is, she hopes he loves basketball as much as she does. The initial thrill of a brother soon wears off, though, and the stresses of adapting to the change in schools, houses, and family starts eating away at her.

Will she also be able to adjust?

A fun, lively rendition of a modern-day folktale. The characters are well-developed, and the story is likable and holds the reader's interest. Those who like realistic fiction, books about blended families, and school stories will enjoy reading TALL STORY.

Reviewed by: Kira M
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I can't believe I didn't review this book when I read it - which I did in a single night. I absolutely loved it, couldn't put it down.

The characters are warm and engaging and the story spreads it's arms right around the world. It reads like a modern fable in some ways. Beautifully constructed, it held me in the palm of it's little papery hands right until the end.

I would recommend for 9 and up, younger if they're confident readers. Then again, I'm 44 and I loved it.
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