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The terrible thing that happened to Barnaby Brocket

The terrible thing that happened to Barnaby Brocket

Boyne, John, 1971-; Jeffers, Oliver

Alistair and Eleanor Brocket turn up their noses at anyone strange or different. But from the moment Barnaby Brocket comes into the world, it's clear he's anything but normal. To the horror and shame of his parents, Barnaby appears to defy the laws of gravity - and floats

Hardback, Book. English. Fiction 9+. Children's stories. General.
Published London: Doubleday Children's, 2012
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Statement of responsibility: John Boyne ; illustrated by Oliver Jeffers
ISBN: 0857531468, 9780857531469
Intended audience: Juvenile.
Physical Description: 277 p. : ill. ; 21 cm.
Subject: LGBT; Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender.

Accelerated Reading

Book Level: 6.2
Interest Level: MY
Points: 9
Quiz Number: 223267

Author note

John Boyne was born in Ireland and is the author of seven novels for adults and three for children. His first novel for children,The

Boy In The Striped Pyjamas,won two Irish Book Awards, was shortlisted for the British Book Award and was made into a film. His novels are published in over 40 languages.

Oliver Jeffers is an internationally acclaimed author/illustrator. His first picture book,How to Catch a Starwas published in 2004. Since then he has created a further five picture books to much critical acclaim. He has won the Irish Book Award (where he first met John), the Blue Peter Book of the Year and the Nestle Children's Book Prize as well as a host of shortlistings, including the prestigious Kate Greenaway Medal.


Mr and Mrs Brocket live an obsessively normal life in Sydney - until their third child, Barnaby, is born. Because Barnaby floats, like a helium-filled balloon, unless he is weighted down. Embarrassed and frustrated by their son's inability to be normal, they cut him loose at the age of eight, and Barnaby floats away on a series of adventures . . . Boyne's previous children's novels (The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas, Noah Barleywater Runs Away) have dealt with serious, life-changing themes and his deftness of touch is equally evident in this uplifting celebration of otherness
Daily Mail||Delightfully quirky . . . with a delightful cast of characters, this books celebrates and acknowledges difference
The Bookseller||It's unashamedly and often delightfully whimsical. It's lovely to look at . . . It has much of the pell-mell what-the-hell-happens-nextness of Dahl and Ibbotson
Guardian||A whimsical, warm-hearted adventure . . . beautifully illustrated by Oliver Jeffers
The Bookseller||This funny, warm, but poignant story has a thought-provoking message about the importance of accepting difference and being true to yourself. Barnaby makes for a hugely likeable hero, and this story is full of fantastic characters, from eccentric contemporary artists to a villainous ringmaster to Barnaby's beloved dog, Captain W E Johns. Booklovers will enjoy spotting the numerous references to books fromHeiditoAround the World in 80 Daysin a book which is in part a tribute to the power of the imagination. Surreal and quirky in the tradition of children's writers like Roald Dahl, there are some moments of darkness here too, but although the final resolution is bittersweet, this is ultimately a deeply uplifting story. Oliver Jeffers' beautiful illustrations add the perfect finishing touch

Back cover copy

Barnaby continued to rise, higher and higher into the sky, unsure what was going to happen to him next . . .