Rating: 4 stars
As soon as I saw the proof had arrived at work, it may have accidentally fallen into my bag (I mean, sorry lovely people at work, but you snooze, you lose) – after reading The Christmasaurus last year I was intrigued as to what Tom Fletcher’s second chapter book would be like. Spoiler: I was not disappointed.
At first glance of the title, I’ll admit, I thought maybe the book was about me, simply because my joints seem to be competing for the title of the Creakiest Joints of a Twenty Three Year Old (seriously, you should’ve heard me when I stood up on the train, The Creakers in hand, and managed to click all elbows/knees/ankles just by walking to the train doors). Luckily, the book is waaaay more fun and exciting than if it had been about my creaky bones, so we can all say a big thank you for that and crash on with the actual review.
Upon opening the book and reading the author’s letter (especially the bit about being grown up and still being afraid of what’s hiding in the dark – I am so incredibly with you on that), the tiny (read: INCREDIBLY LARGE) part of my brain that gets easily scared was slightly nervous – if this is a book about what’s hiding under your bed, do I want to read it (and possibly be traumatised by the end of it forevermore)?! In the end, I summoned my inner Gryffindor (this girl may be a proud Hufflepuff but is also a proud Huffledor, thnx buzzfeed) and read on…
And, oh, what a treat it was.
The Creakers begins with Lucy Dungston waking up one day to discover that all the adults of Whiffington have vanished. Gone! All of them! Not one in sight. Consequently, soon enough all the children are running wild; driving cars*, getting stuck in washing machines, eating ice cream for dinner, and generally making A Big Mess. Combining forces with Scout Norman Quirk (currently the only Scout in the Whiffington Scout Troop), and the Mayor of Whiffington’s daughter, Ella Noying (who occasionally lives up to her name…), Lucy must discover what exactly is going on and rescue the parents. Oh, and of course, discover who the Creakers are… (I won’t say any more for fear of spoilers, but you will never look at the space under your bed in the same way.)
This book can best be described as a whole load of fun. Seriously, there is so much fluffy, silly, (and slightly creepy!) fun-ness going on, I had a hard time not smiling my way through the entire thing (but then I’d be the weird girl on the train smiling at a book as she reads, so I hid behind the book from the boring suit-wearing commuters, and then became the weird adult reading a giant, green children’s book on the train, so I really couldn’t win**). This is the perfect book to get kids loving reading, and has a wonderful main character in the form of Lucy, who I’m sure will become a favourite to many (I, for one, would like to be her when I grow up). I also love love loved the recycling idea thingy (read the book to understand what I mean, dear reader) that I desperately want to be true (I will spare you all the conservationist ramble about waste and recycling; this post is long enough as is). The icing on the cake, though, have to be the illustrations (SO GOOD), and the author comments dotted throughout. I’m sure the book would work really well read aloud, and those comments would make it an extra special – ‘Look, Imaginary Child I’m Reading To, the author is talking to you!!’ (it’s the little things, right…?).
I could babble on further but as this post is turning more into an essay, I should probably stop, and I’ll leave you with a final thought: grab your torch, a bag of marshmallows and a couple of friends, and prepare yourself to meet the Creakers…
*I SEE YOU WHAT YOU DID THERE.
**I have to admit, that is a slight lie… I will not be shamed for reading a children’s book, fellow commuter Snooty McSnoot. You enjoy the financial times and I’ll genuinely enjoy my book, judgement free, thank you very much.
PS – if by some miracle Tom Fletcher actually sees this (hi!), then I’m just gonna throw it out there that there’s a wonderful indie children’s bookshop in Richmond that would love to do an event with you if you’re ever in the area (tea and biscuits/cake included, obv)…
PPS – this post is ridiculously long, and if you’ve got this far then I’m going to assume that you either a) fell asleep on the arrow keys on your laptop, b) received the bribery money I sent to you, or c) are my mum. Who will ever know?