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There's a Hamster in my Pocket Paperback – 6 Jan 2011
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'There's a Hamster in my Pocket' fairly fizzes off the page. No one better captures the realism of urban children's lives and weaves it with their inner worlds to such sparkling effect. (Dr Gillian Klein, editor of Race Equality Teaching and director of Trentham Books)
This is a buzzy good read, full of funny twists and turns that end up well. (Armadillo Magazine)
A very funny story with just enough suspense to keep the reader's attention. The characters are believable and children readily identify withtheir worries. A good book for children setting out to read chapter stories by themselves. (Parents in Touch)
A great read with short, illustrated chapters always ending on a cliffhanger and a neat, satisfying ending. (Carousel)
The book says a lot for friendship between the two different cultures as well as for family dynamics - what the children fear often turns out for the best, if only they new it! The ending of the book satisfies all parties, and will be enjoyed by readers. (School Librarian)
Examines friendship through mystery, humour and a menagerie of animals. (Shortlisted for 2011 Scottish Children's Book Awards) (TESS)
For newly confident readers, 'There's a Hamster in My Pocket' is just about perfect - a laugh-out-loud tale about pets, deadly curses and eccentric families. (Scotland on Sunday)
About the Author
Franzeska lives in the village of Lochwinnoch in Renfrewshire, where she enjoys the wildlife, especially in the RSPB bird reserve. She's written over 25 books for children, and often uses shadow theatre to help people of all ages with their writing. She was Royal Literary Fund Writing Fellow at the University of the West of Scotland in Ayr, helping students with their academic writing. Her books for Frances Lincoln are Sita, Snake Queen of Speed and There's a Hamster in my Pocket.
To follow Franzeska's blog, click here
Helen Bate is an exciting and versatile illustrator, who previously qualified as an architect. Her work for Frances Lincoln includes the Purple Class stories by Sean Taylor and Sita, Snake-Queen of Speed by Franzeska Ewart. She is also the publisher of Pictures to Share, a series of illustrated books for people with dementia. Her picture book ABC UK by James Dunn was nominated for the Kate Greenaway Medal. She currently lives in Cheshire.
Top customer reviews
Yosser is a girl of about ten who has to temporarily share her bedroom with Nani (her grandmother) while her Auntie Shabnam from Lahore, in Pakistan, comes to stay for a while. Her family's main problem, and the reason for the aunt's visit, is that their shop is going through a difficult time financially. Meanwhile Yosser's best friend Kylie has stresses and strains of her own, because her older brother Sniper might get into trouble again and seems to be acting suspiciously. A strange wooden box belonging to Nani may be at the heart of all these problems, a box that can only be opened with a heart-shaped key. Yosser and Kylie believe that if they can find the unusual key, all their problems could be solved. Yosser often carries a pair of Kylie's hamsters around in her pocket.
My daughter read this book in full and liked it, she said that she shared in the best friends' emotions and wanted their problems to be solved. It was amusing in places, and one of the appealing things to her was how suspense was maintained throughout and how she always looked forward to seeing how events developed after a cliff-edge chapter ending.
She's given it four stars rather than five is because she thought the story was a little confusing in places, although this might be down to her age and typical reading matter by comparison. There was a chapter called 'Nightmare' for example that she found confusing because she wasn't sure what was a dream and what was reality.
In summary, this is a very good read for children, it's colourful and eventful with some unusual issues to think about. It's highly visual, in that the words conjure up many images in the mind - a cinematic effect which children are likely to enjoy and appreciate.
This story is told through the eyes of Yosser and it is about her family, her best friend Kylie and her family.
A simple story but it bounces along at a good pace. Its well written, definate plus for a childs story.
I liked this story and I can see how it will appeal to those aged 8 and upwards. Only 96 pages short, just the right length for those embarking on reading.
I got this for my 9 year old daughter, who read it at one sitting. She really enjoyed it, particularly identifying with Yosser's desire for a pet. She also identified with the friendship at the heart of the story.
The book would be fine for any child over 7, and I think one which girls would particularly enjoy. It is a paperback - but isn't particularly long, and would be ideal for those developing confidence in reading paperback books.
I would recommend it, and I'd like to see this one available in school libraries.
There's a hamster in my pocket was greeted with a big smile, (and they say never judge a book by its cover) some of the words were a little difficult for him and a little frustrating, not sure If the story needs to be about Franzeska who lives in the village of Lochwinnoch in Renfrewshire, may be a simpler name and place would have been better, only my opinion, nothing negative intended.
The Story is very well written, it adds suspense, funny bits and emotions, which were all new to my little boy while he read it, I don't know If he got it all.
This is a very good children's book that we enjoyed, my son was amazed at how it made pictures and emotions all in his head, he is on the look out for the next Hamster in my pocket
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