Opal Moonbaby Forever by Maudie Smith
|Opal Moonbaby Forever by Maudie Smith|
|Category: Confident Readers|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: It's the final part in this trilogy for the 7+ girl. Smith deals with important issues sensitively and these are excellent stories. Definitely recommended.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 266||Date: February 2014|
|Publisher: Orion Children's Books|
|External links: Author's website|
Opal Moonbaby has been on earth for nearly a year now and the time is fast approaching for her to return to Carnelia where there's a glittering future mapped out for her. She's approaching this logically - as she does everything - and, of course, Carnelians don't do emotion. That's an Earth thing. It's different for Martha though - she knows exactly how many days it will be before Opal has to leave and she's devastated at the thought of losing her best friend - and then Mum's new boyfriend (he has smelly sneakers) takes them all on holiday to Cornwall for a fortnight. That's most of the time which she and Opal had left.
I've loved Opal from the moment I first met her. She's bright, she's zingy and I'm in awe of her logic. Her misuse of the English language has left me with tears running down my face on more than one occasion. The friendship between Opal and Martha has developed well and Maudie Smith captures the interaction well. But this is the final book in the trilogy and although I hate to say it I think that Smith has been wise to do this. Keeping up a relentless stream of muddled sayings cannot be easy - and they don't shine quite so much in Opal Moonbaby Forever as they did in the two earlier volumes, although they are still funny.
Smith deals with a couple of perennial problems - a single parent getting a new partner and the aging of a beloved pet - with sensitivity but the part of the book which shone out for me was the message that friendship meant more than just the personal plusses. Sometimes you have to look at what is best for the other person and encourage them to take that step even if it isn't your personal choice. That might sound rather heavy - but it's not. Smith knows young girls and she has complete mastery of her characters.
I'm sad to see the end of this series, but I'm hopeful that it's not the last we've seen of Maudie Smith. I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.
The book would read as a standalone, but there's a lot more to be had from reading the series in order. Start with Opal Moonbaby.
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