Review Blog

Jul 23 2013

Truly Tan Jinxed by Jen Storer

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Ill. by Claire Robertson. ABC Books, 2013. ISBN 9780733331220.
(Age: 8+) Chapter book. The second in the series, Truly Tan, this funny, lighthearted look at rural life will engage middle primary readers with ease.
Tan and her sister swimming in their dam, cannot help but talk about their father's latest sale purchase, an old tram. It sits forlornly near the dam, and the children have strict instructions not to go anywhere near it. Of course, a rule like that is red rag to a bull, so they are beset with stories about what could possibly be so bad that they are not allowed to go inside. They enlist the help of classmates who tell them it came from a deceased estate, and it even has a name, Miss Havisham. The children then take stock of other things in their house, most of which came to them from other sales in the neighbourhood, many from deceased estates.
Through Tan's diary, pages of which break up the storyline and give us a different perspective, we see how the children react when one sees the curtain flutter on the old tram.
Tan has plans to be a girl detective and armed with the accoutrement of a detective, a tape recorder, pens and pencils, she and the others plot their course of action. They camp one night near the dam, and encounter a ghost, and this is enough to keep readers hooked in this highly entertaining tale. Fun ensues with all coming out right in the end.
Fran Knight

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