The girl with the lost smile by Miranda Hart

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Ill. by Kate Hindley. Hachette, 2017. ISBN 9781444941364
(Age: 8+) Recommended. "Chloe Long has lost her smile. She's looked everywhere for it. (Under her pillow. Under her bed. Under her nose. Obviously.) She's tried everything to bring it back. (Her favourite cake. Her favourite gran. Her favourite joke. Obviously.) But nothing seems to be working!
Until one night, something utterly magical happens - and Chloe finds herself on an adventure that is out of this world . . . "
Miranda Hart (you may be familiar with her from Call the Midwife), has constructed a book that is certain to make you laugh and cry at the same time. She takes us on a magical, adventurous journey that celebrates the imagination and the strength of true friendship. Although the book is quite long (361 pages), the text is fairly spaced out and reasonably large.
There are still so many messages that can be taken away from this book. Chloe, the main character, struggles with her own issues, allowing herself to escape to her 'magic land' where she battles 'shadow bandits'. I believe this actually parallels with Chloe fighting her own inner thoughts and worries. I think the author may have quite cleverly intertwined some of her own childhood memories into the storyline.
I can see children aged eight and up loving this heart-warming book which has such a positive message. An added bonus are the gorgeous illustrations by the very talented Kate Hindley interspersed throughout the story. A welcome addition to the fantasy collection that will very quickly become a favourite for many.
Kathryn Schumacher