Sweep: The Story of a Girl and her Monster by Jonathan Auxier

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Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier

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Buy Sweep: The Story of a Girl and her Monster by Jonathan Auxier at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Category: Confident Readers
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Mary Waterfall
Reviewed by Mary Waterfall
Summary: A magical story of wonder, love in its many forms, and how by saving others, we may just save ourselves. Told with a modern twist, this classic dark fairy tale, has everything needed for a satisfying snuggle of a bedtime story. It is one of those amazing beasts, capable of enrapturing both young and even very old children.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 368 Date: September 2018
Publisher: Abrams Books
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1419731402

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Nan is a climber, the best chimney sweep in London. She is growing fast, so what will happen to her when she gets too big to climb or when people realise she is a girl? Everything changes, when she becomes stuck in a chimney, is set on fire, and saved by a golem. A story of outcasts, and friendships, told through two tales, the girl and the sweep, and the girl and her monster. Both intertwined beautifully, so that you have a fairy tale within a fairy tale. Moments of sadness slip easily into glorious happiness, then swiftly into heart-breaking tragedy. This is a heart-warming and engaging read for both young and old.

How we would all love to have the Sweep and his lessons on life, to have a monster like Charlie and a friend like Toby, in our lives. Nan may have nothing, she often goes hungry, and has no boots, but is blessed by the wonderful people who love and care for her. This tale has them all, characters you will love fiercely, along with baddies you will boo loudly. A cast of misfits, oddities, and ne’er-do-wells burst from the pages, enough to grace even the most exalted stories of dark and dangerous Victorian London.

Then there is Newt. A poignant foil for the other characters, his fear, his longing for his old life, shining a spotlight on how normalised the risks have become for the other climbers. The darkness of life as a sweep, told with gritty and soulful reality, is a testament to those children who faced the daily shout of Brooms Up. You can feel the claustrophobia in every chimney climbed. The vibrancy of busy London, the people, small acts of kindness, and large acts of betrayal, soon immerse you within the imaginative writing.

Although this is book is probably aimed at more confident readers, much joy could be gained from reading this with younger children. The story has a moral tale, never brash and overdone, just enough to make people think, make you ponder. The best bedtime stories have these moments, the never-ending sleepy questions, just before eyes close, where you talk about the world. Why some people are mean, why is life unfair? How some people can have nothing, yet still have hearts large enough to love a whole city.

Sweep: the Story of a Girl and her Monster is likely to become a modern classic, written with the feel of such classics, as Black Beauty, Oliver Twist, and The Water Babies. For a similar, feisty heroine, readers may like The Luck Uglies by Paul Durham. You might also enjoy Tiger Heart by Penny Chrimes and we also have a review of Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes by Jonathan Auxier.

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Buy Sweep: The Story of a Girl and her Monster by Jonathan Auxier at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Sweep: The Story of a Girl and her Monster by Jonathan Auxier at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy Sweep: The Story of a Girl and her Monster by Jonathan Auxier at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Sweep: The Story of a Girl and her Monster by Jonathan Auxier at Amazon.com.

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