Review Blog

Jan 23 2013

Birthday bonanza by Aleesah Darlison

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Ill. by Serena Geddes. Totally Twins series, Bk 4. New Frontier Publishing, 2012. ISBN: 9781921928208. 188 pages.
(Age: 7-11) Recommended. This is the fourth 'fabulous diary of Persephone Pinchgut' and strange names, witty musings and humorous family drama are what you will find hidden within. This is one of those books that you feel like you've read a hundred times before but is nevertheless indulgently fun to read. Young girls will love 'sensible' Persephone and her love-hate relationship with her identical twin sister Portia. Bossy, self-obsessed Portia is completely different to Perse who is kind and sensitive. Just back from a fabulous holiday in Fiji Perse and Portia are busy planning for their 11th birthday party. Well Persephone is planning - Portia is scheming how to have a birthday extravaganza complete with disco ball and hundreds of guests. It seems that the birthday party is all the twins have to worry about or look forward to . . . until numerous bombshells are dropped and all pandemonium breaks lose. Engagements, surprise house guests, lots of babies and one princess party ensues. In between all this there is Portia attacking baby possums, yoga classes in the house, cake obsession, wet undies being thrown around, happy dances over white bread sandwiches and many un-received 'secret signals'.
This is a lovely book which deep down is about two sisters who may be different but love each other dearly. It also deals very lightly with issues of divorce, step-parents and coping with family change. Full of wit and humour and funny family happenings and conversations this diary story flows easily, is well written and has some fantastically amusing black and white illustrations scattered throughout. A classic pre-teen read that girls will simply love.
Nicole Smith-Forrest

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