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Ms TJ, What Cool Books @WCB Library

Wed Wabbit

Lissa Evans' Wed Wabbit sparkles with effervescent fun. It has a ridiculously crazy premise that works wonderfully well. Imagine a "deeply soppy" book that you have had to read to your four year old sister so many times that every nauseating line is ingrained in your brain. Think Care Bears and Tele tubbies at hyper speed colliding with the Wombles of Wimbledon Common in a blancmange shaped pink flash.

This is the situation that ten and a half year old Fidge finds herself in as she is asked to read 'Wimbley Woos' for the ten thousandth time. Worse she has to "wead it pwoply, with expwession." Furthermore she is convinced that Minnie's favourite toy rabbit is staring at her with glassy eyes and she feels so frustrated that all she wants to do is to wipe the smug expression off its face. At least she has an adventure holiday to look forward to. The trouble is she can't control her temper.

Fidge's impetuous behaviour leads to unforeseen circumstances that cause her to be stuck with her insufferably awful hypochondriac cousin Graham who seems to languish from every anxiety ever invented. Clinging to his "transitional object", he is scared to live, much to Fidge's scorn.
Suddenly, weird events conspire to shake Graham and Fidge's core beliefs. Before they can blink they are trapped in an alternative reality with strange companions for company.

In an instant the world Minnie adores is very real but why isn't it like Fidge imagines it to be? Why have sweets been banned? Why is a carrot on wheels communicating with Graham? Who is in charge and just why is it so important for Fidge to remember every detail of what she has read?

Can the annoying rhyme,

In Wimbley Land live Wimbley Woos

Who come in many different hues

In Yellow, Pink and Green and Blue,

In Orange, Grey and Purple too.

Yellow are timid, Blue are strong

Grey are wise and rarely wrong.

Green are daring, Pink give cuddles,

Orange are silly and get in muddles.

Purple Wimblies understand

The past and future of our land

give Fidge a sense of purpose?

Chased by pink bins wanting to cuddle her, importuned by greys who think she is the key to their problem, pursued by aggressive blues wishing to imprison her, confounded by frightened yellows, confused by mystic purples, irritated by loud greens who are anything but inconspicuous and frustrated by foolish oranges, Fidge discovers that only by confronting her worse fear will she be able to return home.

The trouble is the land is changing rapidly as Fidge struggles to solve the clues that will unlock the mystery. Can an expressive and dramatic elephant called Ella, a vegetable with a medical qualification, a disparate collection of Wimbley Woos and Graham be her salvation? Only one person can help her understand what she needs to do to circumvent disaster but can she reach them before it's too late?

This book is delightful and it is obvious that Lissa Evans had an enjoyable time writing it. Her plot is ingenious and comical, her characters are engaging and her clever use of language is endlessly entertaining. Word play, rhyming couplets, nonsense verse and incomprehensible riddles all play a role. The result is a quirky and humorous rollercoaster ride through a playful imagination that reinvents the phrase 'down the rabbit hole'. Fidge encounters obstacles, meets talking objects and faces a very unusual dictator all while learning a very important lesson.

Try this book. You won't regret it. It's brilliantly inventive like Un Lun Dun, "curiouser and curiouser" like a certain little girl's adventures underground and fantastical like the land of Oz. Whatever you do- just - "Don't laugh. He's dangerous."

Posted on: 16th April 2018 at 07:54 pm

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