It's another beautifully written Jacqueline Wilson story, but there's not a lot of fun in this one.
It's all about Violet and how she copes with her difficult family. She's got this brother you see, only, he isn't really her brother because he's just discovered that he was adopted when he was a baby. But Violet absolutely insists that she loves him just the same. Violet has always adored Will, even though sometimes, he terrifies her.
She's got this loud-mouthed, pompous policeman father who bullies her mother:
I knew Mum longed for a proper girly daughter to confide in. But I never knew what to say to Mum. We didn't have a thing in common. It was almost as if I was the one who was adopted.
Even Violet can see that her mother should stand up to her father sometimes, but she never does. And nor does Violet stand up to her brother, Will:
What was I doing, still playing these weird games with Will? Why did I always let him control me? He didn't really have any power over me. He couldn't make me do anything, not if I stood up to him. I just didn't know how to do it.
Violet really needs to talk it over with someone. When Jasmine, self-possessed and beautiful, starts at Violet's school they become instant friends. Now, is Jasmine really on Violet's side, or is Will going to spoil it all? And who else is there that Violet could talk to?
This is a surprisingly powerful story and it quite scared me, wondering what Will was going to do next, so I had to read it really quickly. Highly recommended!
One thing though, I was left wondering what was Violet's thought process that led her to make the changeling baby out of her ragbag of bits at the end of this story? Remember the illustration, right at the beginning of the book, of the changeling child?
Fairies steal away beloved babies and leave a changeling child in their place. These base elfin breeds are often evil, with difficult, demanding natures and enormous appetites.
Perhaps after her conversation with Casper Dream Violet had faced up to the fact that Will was less than perfect as a brother? That didn't mean she didn't love him any more, but making the changeling child might have helped her to break the apparent hold that he had over her.
yazmyn, girl, age 12, from Birmingham, United Kingdom, on 4th February 2007. Rating: 9/10
I really liked this book. my little cousin kept on nagging me to get this, because she watched it at the theatre on a school trip. Its really good. looked up casper dream on the internet and i couldnt find him it made me feel as if there was a casper dream but there is casper dream fairy figures everytime jaqueline writes she brings things to life and you feel like youre really there and like what would you do if you were in that predicament i liked the fact that in the end they could all get on with their life and the dad had a funny way of showing he loved will and it was a bit sexist that the dad thought boys should play with action figures and football and he should realise that will is different and thats why i like will it shows boys in a different way even if he can be nasty at times.
Nazmoor, girl, age 11, from Enfield, United Kingdom, on 3rd February 2007. Rating: 10/10
I love this horrifing book it just grabbed my attention
Hatty Forrester , girl, age 10 , from Midlands, United Kingdom, on 11th June 2006. Rating:
I think its the best book shes ever wrote. I love the way she describes the charectors especially Jasmine I love the clothes she wears and her bedroom. I also love the fact Violet loves fairies I love fairies too. I've read it 16 times and I bet loads of other kids have read it loads of times too. I hope she writes another book about Violet and Jasmine and Will and the fairies.
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Jacqueline Wilson has written literally dozens of books, and if you aren't already a fan you very soon will be. Have a look at:
If you are interested in the problems of adoption you might like to have a look at this prize-winning book by Hillary McKay:
Or you might enjoy this light American classic about an orphan girl by Jean Webster: