Big Ben

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Rachel Anderson, ill. Jane Ray
Barn Owl Books
Oct 2007
Matthew has a deep level of care and respect for his elder brother Ben. He endeavours to protect Ben from the types of assumption and stereotype that he is subjected to by neighbours and his peers. The strength in Anderson�s text lies in its awareness that even the best intentions of his brother Matthew, do not really allow Ben�s skills and abilities to shine through and that accordingly, his departure to a residential school tailored to his needs comes as a liberation.

There is a marvellous sense of joyous celebration towards the end of this short book as we see Ben actively engage and participate, at which points he feels valued and worthwhile. The juxtaposition between this and the opening of the books is a testament to Anderson�s very real skills as an author. In a short work she has created an entirely convincing fiction where characters develop and adapt to the circumstances surrounding them and to the altered situations facing one another when interacting.

Praise must go to Barn Owl Books � who have recently faced financial uncertainties � for bringing back into print this brilliant shot novel, first published under the �Mammoth Read� imprint and given a new lease of life with superb new accompanying illustrations by Jane Ray

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This page contains a single entry by Jacob published on November 27, 2007 9:09 PM.

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