The Quigleys in a spin
Ages 7 to 9
Random House UK, 2005, 0-385-60768-7
Will and Lucy’s dad has been working very hard and thus, when it is time to read the children a story one night, he ends up nodding off in the middle of the tale. Before she really has really thought the whole thing through, Lucy finds herself painting Dad’s toes with her purple sparkly nail polish while he sleeps. Will then adds to Lucy’s ‘artwork’ by putting a red and green Chinese dragon transfer around each of Dad’s ankles. It is only when they see their handiwork that the children begin to wonder what Dad is going to say when he sees what they have done. At the very least he is not going to be best pleased. At worst…well the children prefer not think about that. Clearly they have to do all they can to prevent Dad from seeing his adorned feet in the cold light of day.
When the funfair comes to town, Mum can’t wait to go on the rides. She loves rides and the bigger and scarier they are the more Mum likes them. At least that is what she thinks. When Mum and Lucy go on the Waltzer together Lucy does indeed get that “tummy feeling” that Mum keeps talking about and she loves it. Poor Mum on the other hand has a different kind of “tummy feeling,” the kind that makes your face turn a nasty shade of green. It would appear that Mum no longer likes going on the rides but she doesn’t want to spoil Lucy’s fun. What on earth is to be done?
In this fourth Quigley book the Quigleys once again get themselves into all kinds of pickles. In addition to Dad’s foot problem and Mum’s tummy difficulties, Lucy’s has the worst birthday party ever, Mum and Dad get stuck on the roof, and the entire family is saddled with a boy who is “difficult, unhelpful, inconsiderate, untruthful, obstructive and uncommunicative.” Young readers will find it very difficult not to laugh out loud as they share these wonderful adventures with this very normal and wonderfully realistic family. The author pokes gentle fun at the family and families of all kinds will see themselves in the Quigleys as the Quigleys stumble and “bicker” their way through life.
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