PIGGY by Mireille Geus


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Age Range: 11 - 14
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Joining the growing number of young autistic narrators is Lizzy Bekell, nicknamed Dizzy because of her unsteadiness under stress, in this translated, award-winning novel from the Netherlands. Comfortable watching the neighborhood boys play in the street, even amidst their occasional jeers, Dizzy is jolted from her routine when the rough, heavy, garrulous and equally lonely Margaret, aka Piggy, moves to her small town. Desperate to make and keep her first real friend, Dizzy endures Piggy’s constant touching, demands and emotional manipulation. Despite her apprehension, she even goes along with Piggy’s plan for revenge against the bullying boys. Although Geus creates suspense by alternating scenes of the girls’ budding friendship with Dizzy’s interrogation by local detectives and tries to pack a punch with a surprise ending, the overall result is not as compelling as such similar titles as Siobhan Dowd’s The London Eye Mystery (2008). Dizzy’s mild, courageous character, encouraged by such standout secondary characters as her calming mother and supportive gym teacher, however, make this an insightful look at autism and self-growth. (Fiction. 11-14)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-1-59078-636-9
Page count: 112pp
Publisher: Front Street/Boyds Mills
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 2008


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