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BLUE LIKE FRIDAY by Siobhán Parkinson Kirkus Star


by Siobhán Parkinson

Age Range: 10 - 14

Pub Date: March 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-1-59643-340-3
Publisher: Roaring Brook

In a hilarious, dryly solemn voice, Olivia tells of her friend Hal’s attempt to get rid of his “sort-of stepfather.” Placing a pebble in each of Alec’s shoes nightly doesn’t make “Him” leave. So Hal anonymously hires Alec to paint the hospital mortuary (triple pay rates for the weekend). Alec takes the bait, inducing a huge row between Alec and Hal’s mother, who’s expecting Alec to attend her golf competition. Hal and Olivia trail Alec to the job—but Alec never emerges, and a flashing police car enters. Has Alec been arrested? A cautious visit to the police station implies not, but then Hal’s mother truly does disappear for days. This mellow Irish town is the perfect setting for Parkinson’s plot, which is funny and serious at the same time. Practical Olivia sometimes rolls her eyes at peculiar Hal, especially his synesthesia (Friday is “tangy . . . sort of lemony, only sweet, like lemon sherbet”), but the two are well-suited. The whereabouts of Hal’s missing mother may provoke vehement opinions. Deftly painful and sweet, never sentimental. (glossary) (Fiction. 10-14)