LONGLISTED FOR THE NORTH SOMERSET TEACHERS' BOOK AWARDS MOVING ON CATEGORY
I couldn't put this book down!
Francis is sitting alone on a bench at school. He's being bullied- because he's different. At home, he has a large collection of dolls all dressed in clothes he has designed and made himself. He is fascinated by fashion, but this doesn't sit well with others. Having sought solitude- a respite from the torments-his peace is disturbed by a girl who sits next to him and who is surprised that he can see her. And so begins a beautiful friendship between Francis and Jessica, a ghost.
The story that unfolds is all about being an individual, about not fitting in the perfect mould society dictates we should, particularly in the years where peer pressure is so strong. It is about a group of unlikely friends getting to know and value each other, each of whom can see Jessica.
And so the story develops to reveal why these particular children can see Jessica. I don't want to spoil the book for anyone by saying too much- it's one you must read!
Difficult issues are handled with sensitivity and thought. The characters are appealing and believable whilst the messages of valuing yourself and not being ashamed of being different comes through clearly without being forced.
Perfect for children looking for a more challenging read, 'Jessica's Ghost' can be enjoyed for being a well-written, rewarding story as well as one which might offer support or comfort.
Jessica's Ghost by Andrew Norriss
David Fickling ISBN: 978-1910200339