A humorous novel from Australia starring a well-meaning heroine who is tempestuous and larger-than-life -- and who was born mute. Rowena Batts's inability to speak doesn't stop her from talking up a storm. She uses sign language for those who understand, carries a pad to write notes to those who don't, and her actions are especially expressive when she is angry -- for example, when she stuffs a frog into the class bully's mouth, then tapes it shut. Her only real problem is her father and his penchant for embarrassing her in public. She survives his singing to her in school and dating her teacher, but when he gets into a food fight with her best friend's father at a community meeting, she decides she must do something drastic. In the first-person narration, Ro's constant complaints about her father wear thin, but she remains likable; Gleitzman (Misery Guts, 1993, etc.) writes in a direct, charming style and short (often one sentence) paragraphs that makes these easy-to-read misadventures extra appealing.