Tuesday, 27 November 2018

Book review : The Inportance of Being Maddison – Helen E. Highton

Hiding behind the sober grey cover of the book is a totally irreverent read that is guaranteed to raise a few belly laughs and squeals of shock ! Seven-year-old Maddison is the narrator and heroine of this hilarious book, which bears witness to an entire year in the McClaren household. Along with her frequently embarrassed and over-run mum Liz and straight-talking, no-nonsense dad Joe, Maddie shares her home with big sister Rachel, aged 21 and soon-to-be married, and brother Robbie, aged 19, who loves squabbling with his sister and posting embarrassing photos of her online … and he has an awful lot to choose from !

Maddie isn’t exactly naughty, as she rarely goes out of her way to do something willfully wrong, but she is always getting into trouble, because she is a total live wire and seems incapable of sitting down for more than a few seconds without going off the rails. Her parents go out of their way to keep her under control, but they’re basically fighting a losing battle – from frequent accidents with flying shoes and fights with her brother to the numerous times when she repeats excruciatingly embarrassing things that she has overheard her parents saying, the book is a delightful sequence of events that any parent could imagine themselves enduring (and quite probably have, on a lesser scale). Her frequent misquotes (such as that in the title) and her childish inability to see the dark humour in what is going on are hilarious and perfectly believable.

Like most parents, I would think, the character I can most relate to is Maddie’s mum Liz, who is constantly trying to predict and prevent Maddie’s outbursts and awkward questions. However, the person I would most like to be is Joe, the dad, who has a quick Scouser’s temper and will only take so much before kicking off and defending his family.

Each chapter looks at a different event throughout the year, from celebrations and holidays to busy weekends or eventful schooldays. They are all situations that any parent can imagine being in, which makes it all so much more fun.

It’s a funny and heart-warming book that will make you appreciate that your kids aren’t really that naughty and shudder when you think that they could have ended up just like Maddison !

Star rating : 4.5/5

RRP : £8.99

  • Paperback: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Troubador Publishing (28 Aug. 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1789010071
  • ISBN-13: 978-1789010077
  • Product Dimensions: 19.7 x 4.4 x 13 cm

Disclosure : I received a review copy of the book.

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