August 23, 2011

Double - review

British cover

Double
by Jenny Valentine
Hyperion Teen
To be published February 2012
tentative American cover





Chap, a homeless nobody, is shown a MISSING poster of a boy who looks exactly like him. Nothing to lose by pretending to be him. "Okay" he lied.

Now called Cassiel, Chap is taken to Cassiel's home in an English village. He isn't the only one with secrets. There are many hidden secrets. Danger lurks.

Double is not a paranormal book and does not have mystical characters, but it reads with the refreshing atmosphere of a fairy tale.

Ahhhhh, a thoroughly satisfying read when all the puzzling questions are tied up at the end.

A favorite passage: Grandad took Chap to the back room of a charity thrift store.
        I thought we were looking for clothes or something, I thought maybe he was going to buy me a suit like his, but all he showed me was a cardboard box full of glasses. Reading glasses, bifocals, lenses thick as bottle tops and thin as ice, big blue frames, little silver ones.
      "Think of all the reading they've done," he said. "Think of all the things those glasses have seen.
       It was like a box full of dead old people.  We were standing in a room full of their clothes. 
       "What are we doing here, Grandad?" I said.
        It was a history lesson. "It's what you do," he said. "It's what you think and see, not what you have."
Profound!  

No wonder Valentine has received four Carnegie Medal nominations.

Note: quotes are from an advance proof.

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