GOOD NEIGHBORS by Colin Thompson

GOOD NEIGHBORS

The Floods, Book 1
Age Range: 10 - 12

KIRKUS REVIEW

Australian artist Thompson moves from finely detailed illustration work into prose for this broadly brushed farce. An extended family that includes seven children—rightly counting Satanella, who only looks like a fox terrier and Betty, who only seems to be an ordinary girl—the Floods are a family of witches and wizards who decorate their suburban home in spider webs and nettles, bury semi-dead relatives in the backyard and work magic in a network of underground caverns. They’re the good neighbors. The bad ones, and truly despicable they are, live next door: Mr. Dent, a loud and abusive collector of rusty junk and stolen car parts; his shoplifting, TV-addict wife; and their psychopathic children, Dickie, at ten already a career criminal, and tart-in-training Tracylene. Once the two clans start to tangle, the Dents don’t have a chance, but the author is less interested in creating suspense in this series opener than in introducing the cast and dwelling with ghoulish delight on such niceties as the Floods’ customary breakfast of slugs, innards and rat brains. Well endowed with chatty footnotes and rounded off with a gallery of characters and creatures, this crowd pleaser will easily draw fans of Alan MacDonald’s Trolls, Go Home! (2007) and similar fare. Finished illustrations not seen. (Fantasy. 10-12)

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-06-113196-7
Page count: 224pp
Publisher: HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15th, 2007




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