The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket
The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket by John Boyne
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Brockets are a completely normal Australian family. They have 2 children and a dog and they definitely don’t want people to look at them differently. When Barnaby is born he floats. Mr and Mrs Brocket really don’t want to deal with that so one day, they let Barnaby go and, before he comes home again he goes on many exciting adventures.

This is a lovely book for children. I have been reading some quite heavy going, serious books for some time and I just wanted something for light relief so I picked this one up from the pile. I am very glad I did so.

The Brocket family are lovely characters in themselves, quite sad in a lot of ways, but their attitude to Barnaby is explained over the course of the novel and, in fact, I did end up feeling sorry for them too. Barnaby is an excellent character, full of interest and ideas and, his relationships with the people he meets are clear and extremely satisfyingly described.

This is clearly and book for young readers. The hidden message is not at all hidden and it is obvious what the reader is meant to take from it. I can see, as an adult reader, that it isn’t very subtle, but, as that is not at all the point, I thought it was brilliant and I have given it straight to my ten year old daughter to read. I am sure she will love it!

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