Review Blog

Mar 30 2015

World War 11 Tales by Terry Deary

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Bloomsbury, 2015
The Bike Escape. ISBN 9781472916242
The Apple Spy. ISBN: 9781472916211
(Age: 8-10) Recommended. The Bike Escape - London 1939. Young Harry is a rough and tumble kind of boy, he's an opportunist whose London life is about to drastically change as is the world around him. It is 1939 and the government decides that hundreds of children were to be evacuated from the city, sent in their best clothes with a label and gas mask hanging around their neck, to an uncertain future.
School life is tough for the boy; corporal punishment is given out for stealing one piece of chalk. When the local policeman and Harry's teacher visit his house, he believes he's off to prison, however he has to be evacuated as well.
Terry Deary captures the atmosphere, their everyday life and the reality of the city and country kids trying to fit in to rural living. Will Harry be successful in escaping from Miss Pim's house and find his way sixty miles back to London on a borrowed Land Army girl's bike?
The Apple Spy - Scotland 1940. Siblings Marie and Jamie Bruce are bored: who wants to listen to the teacher reading the fairy tale of Snow White, the evil queen and the poisoned apple? Luckily they did! When they are sent home for being rude, Marie has a better plan - why not catch the Edinburgh express train instead. Two strangers are also on the platform asking directions from the station-master. Jamie picks up on their German accents and water-soaked clothes. He's an avid reader of the Wizard comic books that are filled with secret agents and German spy stories. With Jamie's quick thinking and Marie's quick summoning of the local Home Guard, the spies are apprehended. Of course, there's a third German spy who jumps on board, at the very last minute and Marie follows him. Jamie hops on and runs through the carriages to find Marie. He saves his sister's life, when he stops her from eating a poisoned apple from the spy's suitcase.
Terry Deary's World War 11 Tales are drawn from real-life stories, the junior novels bring to life the experiences of children living at this time in Great Britain's history. James de la Rue's ink sketches add humour to the stories, especially the illustrations of the teachers!
Rhyllis Bignell

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