Floss's parents are divorced, and she divides up her week, spending five days with her mum, her new stepdad and her baby half-brother. The other two days Floss spends with her dad, helping him to run his greasy spoon cafe. But their simple arrangement is thrown into disarray when Floss's mum decides to move to Australia.
Making the difficult decision to stay at home, Floss moves in permanently with her dad and they muddle along happily together, surviving on chip butties and enjoying visits to the local funfair. But disaster strikes - Dad's money troubles catch up with him and they have to move out of the cafe. They're homeless - but can their new fairground friends help out?
The latest from Britain's former Children's Laureate is vintage Wilson. Flora Barnes splits her week between her mother, who has remarried a successful executive, and her father whose situation is less rosy. When her stepfather accepts a temporary transfer to Australia, "Floss," as she is called, must choose to spend six months in sunny Sydney or to stay with her father above his failing chip shop. At school, she's also torn. Her best friend, the "posh and persnickety" Rhiannon, has become materialistic and judgmental; Floss can't stand the cruel teasing Rhiannon directs at a new classmate. When Floss chooses to stay with her dad because she realizes he needs her more than her mother does her standing at school suffers. Her mismatched clothing, which carries the greasy spoon's scent, makes her the new target of Rhiannon's torments. Meanwhile, her father is losing his shop to bankruptcy and the possibility of homelessness becomes real. This tension paces a novel that contains many compelling, sometimes gritty, elements shopping, gambling, fair-going, romance, a knife-fight and even a scary fire. All that action makes the narrative longer than usual for this age group, but Floss's emotional turmoil should hook girls. There's a real tenderness to her relationship with her father, fully dimensional in all his flaws, a man whose love for his daughter often clouds his judgment. A full page of Sharratt's comic-strip style panels opens each chapter, and "Floss's Glossary" defines unfamiliar Briticisms. Ages 9-12.
Customer ReviewsSee All
This drastic but moving novel can send you to deep thoughts, and encourages you to push through the struggles of family dramas. It shows true reality, and every gripping page draws you closer to the big, beautiful heart of Floss. It’s a truly brilliant read!
This book teaches you to stick with person/people you love and care for rather than turning to the people/person who just uses you as a target to humiliate.But any TRUE friend or family member would care for you as you for them.In this book Floss is brave to stay in England with her divorced dad while her mum,step-dad and step- brother tiger jet off to the warm and sunny Australia.But everything soon starts spiralling out of floss's control and things don't go to plan when her dads cafe is getting stripped to be turned into a Starbucks and floss and her dad are homeless.But not for long when dads best customer old Ron wins betting money and also jets off to Australia to see his son and leaves his house with them.