Saturday, October 16, 2010

Ottoline Goes To School


I love books that take place in an alternate version of our world, where people live in museum-like hotels or mansions, where they have long and complicated names like Cecily Forbes-Lawrence III, where characters have quirky hobbies or jobs like 'collectors'. Books like The Mysterious Benedict Society, The Penderwicks on Gardam Street, and now Ottoline Goes to School.

Chris Riddell's intricate drawings bring humor to the story of Ottoline, a privileged girl whose parents are off exploring the world, leaving her home with a mysterious sidekick named Mr. Munroe. When she meets Cicely, an amazing storyteller with seriously absent parents, she is inspired to follow her to boarding school.

Ottoline's adventures at school would be fun for elementary school students who are ready to imagine how school could be different. It would be a great bedtime story or a classroom read aloud. The repetition of certain lines will inspire struggling readers and the gorgeous illustrations will have all readers peering intently at the page.

PS. It's my birthday! Time to order myself some books!

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