Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Potter, Ellen. 2010. KNEEBONE BOY. New York: Macmillan. ISBN 9780312377724 [Suggested Grade Levels 3-6]
The Hardscrabble kids are accustomed to people talking about them. After all, their mother disappeared years ago, and people still believe their father was behind it. When a series of mishaps leaves the children fending for themselves, they end up living in a castle and attempting to discover the mystery behind the real castle's legend of the Kneebone boy.
Told by a narrator who refuses to identify him (or her?) self, the verbal sparring between siblings and dry verbal asides call to mind the narrator from Lemony Snicket. Only better. In the end, the story is more about family and secrets as the children face their own tragic past and grow in the process. One of the best lines of the book: "All great adventures have moments that are really crap."
KNEEBONE BOY’s unique narrative voice lends itself well to reading aloud. Have listeners pay attention for clues to discover which of the Hardscrabble kids is telling the tale.
Children who like the narrative style of KNEEBONE BOY, may enjoy the narrators of these as well:
Snicket, Lemony. THE SERIES OF UNFORTUANTE EVENTS: THE BAD BEGINNING. ISBN 9780064407663
Wood, Maryrose. THE INCORIGIBLE CHILDREN OF ASHTON PLACE: THE MYSTERIOUS HOWLING. ISBN 9780061791055
Gidwitz, Adam. A TALE DARK AND GRIMM. ISBN 9780525423348
By Marianne Follis