A Good Read

Reconstructing Amelia
by Kimberly McCreight

We all think we know our children. We think we understand what makes them tick and we like to think that they would turn to us if they were in trouble. But do we really know what is going on in their lives?
Kate certainly thought she knew about her 15-year-old daughter, Amelia. As a young law student Kate found herself pregnant and saw the chance to have the one thing she had always wanted: love. And so, she raised Amelia – with the help of a nanny – qualified as a lawyer and became successful in her career. She appears to have everything. A comfortable home in a desirable part of Brooklyn, and a place at Grace Hall prep school for Amelia: the perfect life.
Of course, perfection is fragile, and it doesn’t take much to bring Kate’s world tumbling down. She receives a phone call from the principle at Grace Hall. There has been an incident and Amelia is to be suspended for three days. She requests that Kate comes immediately to collect her from school. Dropping everything is not always an option, and public transport can sometimes let you down. Life can let you down far more than you can dare to imagine.
She arrives at Grace Hall too late. Too late to collect her daughter; her only child who is now lying on the concrete, covered by a sheet. What could make a normal, happy 15-year-old jump off a building to her death?
Alternating narratives draw us into the lives of Kate and Amelia, reconstructing the events that led to Amelia being on the roof of the school. Did she jump? Or is there something darker going on? Do any of us really know our teenagers?

The World’s Worst Children
by David Walliams

The quickest way to get someone to do something is to tell them not to. And as a reader you are certainly warned not to read this book. So of course, any child will pick this book up and do exactly the opposite of this advice.
And they will certainly be glad that they did! Ten short stories make up this book, each one telling of the life of a particularly unpleasant child. In many ways it appears to be a straightforward case of morality. The unpleasant children don’t think things through and only behave in a way that THEY feel will be beneficial to them.
Dip into a story at any point, or read the book from start to finish, it is entirely up to you. But be warned. These truly are the world’s worst children!
There is Nigel Nit-Boy. He isn’t interested in super-heroes, but super-villains and there are none with a super skill like his. Find out what happens when he gets trapped in the Natural History Museum over night. I’ll give you a clue: it isn’t pretty. Perhaps Grubby Gertrude is more your style. Sure, we all get dirty as children – making mud pies, or splashing in puddles. Gertrude takes this to the next level.
So dear reader, enter if you dare and read this book…or don’t…the choice is yours.