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Girl, 15, Charming But Insane
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Utterly hilarious and utterly compellingfantastically well-observed glimpse into the charming-but-insane thoughts of a teenage girlgirls will LOVE this, boys will be reading it over their shoulder

About the Author

Sue's writing career started in London around 1980, with various assignments for magazines and newspapers, and her first radio work, BIG AND LITTLE, which won a Sony Award for Best Children's Programme. Other radio projects have included the series UP THE GARDEN PATH, THE WORDSMITHS AT GORSEMERE, and THE SIT-CROM. Various radio shows have invited sue aboard as a guest, including: STOP THE WEEK, A WORD IN EDGEWAYS, QUOTE UNQUOTE, SLIGHTLY FOXED, A GOOD READ, LOOSE ENDS and WOMAN'S HOUR. UP THE GARDEN PATH was adapted by Sue for television and three series were produced by Humphrey Barclay and Granada Television. It started off Sue's first novel, followed soon after by a sequel, LOVE'S LABOURS, in which the comprehensive school teacher Izzy gets even more comprehensively entangled. LOVE FORTY was Sue's autobiographical account of going to live in the country, the birth of her daughter (1985) and the glorious dawn of middle age. A more recent novel, SHEEP'S EYES AND HOGWASH, which one might call an unexpectedly romantic version of pastoral, is published by Heinemann. Children's Books include BIG AND LITTLE, CHINA LEE, ME JANE, BIG TROUBLE and MR LOOPY AND MRS SNOOPY. COME BACK GRANDMA is published by Random House and was shortlisted for the Smarties Prize. This is Sue's second book for Bloomsbury. She lives on a remote organic farm near Nailsworth in Gloucestershire.

Reviews

Sure to leave readers in stitches, Limb's (Come Back, Grandma) account of a British girl's mishaps and humiliations follows a protagonist who resembles a teenage Bridget Jones. The novel, told in a third-person narrative, gets into the psyche of Jess Jordan, who describes herself as "girl, fifteen, charming, but insane, huge bum, massive ears" and compares herself to her all-too-perfect best friend, Flora Barclay ("Somehow the birds never pooed on Flora's house. It was a sign that the Barclay family were the Chosen Ones"). While good luck comes as easily to Flora as good looks, Jess thinks of herself as hopelessly flawed (especially her chest, which she describes as "the kind of featureless plain upon which airports are constructed"). Her attempt to enhance her bust line-by fashioning silicone-like bags from minestrone soup-fails miserably when a lecherous schoolmate causes one of the bags to explode at a party. Jess flees to the bathroom where, she later learns, a hidden video camera captures her clean-up efforts. On the bright side, Jess has a kind of guardian angel in Fred Parsons, a scraggly-haired classmate whom Jess takes for granted. Unfortunately, by the time Jess realizes her true feelings for Fred, she may have lost him to Flora. In this fast-paced slice-of-life novel, Jess emerges as "everyteen," jealous of her best friend's virtues, critical of her own shortcomings and seeking goals that often turn out not to be what she wanted. Most readers will see a little of themselves in Jesse as she rides waves of disaster and manages to stay afloat. Ages 10-up. (Aug.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

'It's classic stuff ... laugh out loud funny' Carousel

Gr 7-10-In this first book in a proposed trilogy, readers are introduced to Jess Jordan, her friend Flora, a few love interests, and Jess's mom, grandma, and absent father whose funny e-mailed horoscopes begin each chapter. The book has a fun cover and the plot is well paced, ending on a cliff-hanger leaving plenty of threads to be answered in the next book. These junior Bridget Joneses have plenty of charm: Will Jess pine for dreamy Brad or realize that her good friend Fred is the man for her? The way the author handles the situation and adds a few levels of conflict and a few possible love triangles will have readers ready for the second installment. This title will appeal to fans of Meg Cabot, Louise Rennison, and others who like heroines who have a little vinegar to go with their sugar.-Amy Patrick, New York Public Library Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

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