The Kneebone Boy by Ellen Potter
Middle Grade Fiction
ARC courtesy of publisher
release date September 14, 2010
“Life in a small town can be pretty boring when everyone avoids you like the plague.” Is the first line of the back cover. “In this wickedly dark, unusual, and compelling novel, Ellen Potter masterfully tells the tale of one deliciously strange family and a secret that changes everything.” back cover
“There were three of them. Otto was the oldest, and the oddest. Then there was Lucia, who wished something interesting would happen. Last of all was Max, who always thought he new better. They lived in a small town in England called Little Tunks. There is no Big Tunks.”
So starts the newest book by Ellen Potter, author of SLOB (one of daughter’s all time favorite books). The Hardscrabble Kids, Otto, Lucia, and Max end up on an “adventure” to London when their father inadvertently sends them to stay with their aunt, who just happens to be out of town.
Chapter subheadings such as this one from Chapter Two “In which Otto finds something interesting, Lucia listens to nothing at all, and more stuff happens” or “In which we finally meet The Kneebone Boy. Sort of.”move the book along nicely in a manner you can see where the author has earned her comparison to Dahl or Snicket.
Great setting such as Little Tunks, Snoring-by-the-Sea or the Castle folly, as well as endearing supporting characters such as Saint George and Hattie
Originally the cover made me think the book might be about zombies, which now after listening to The Forest of Hands and Teeth, made me go back to my notes that I had made earlier this month. I think I have a serious zombie prejudice. “Almost didn’t read this book because the pale children made me think the was about zombies,” my notes revealed.
Hmmm…I thought I hadn’t given zombies much thought before. It must have been back there in my subconsious somewhere.
A great read, that will have kids wanting to know if the Hardscrabble children will be having more adventures. A must for school and classroom libraries.