Carnegie Longlist 2016 · Carnegie Nominations 2016 · Carnegie Shortlist 2016

Five Children on the Western Front by Kate Saunders

I must be one of the few people who never read Five Children and It at school so I had no expectations of what this book should be like. There was a good balance between the real life story of World War 1 and fantasy story of the Psammead which moulded together very well. Some of the children are now at the age that they are able to go off to fight and the family is having to live with the uncertainty on a daily basis. The Psammead has arrived back in their lives and they are trying to work out why he is there. This time he has limited power to grant wishes, none of which he has control over and seems to be equally grumpy as the last time he appeared.  Even though they did refer to the other book it was possible to enjoy this book as a stand alone.

I am not sure if today’s children will really ‘get’ this book as much as adults who had read the first one. It will be really interesting to see if the students who shadow the awards are taken with this book or not. I feel that if children have read and enjoyed Enid Blyton they may enjoy this too but I am not sure if the magical side of the Psammead will be enough to pull them in.

Maybe I did need to read Five Children and it to really appreciate this one!

Written by Elizabeth

One thought on “Five Children on the Western Front by Kate Saunders

  1. This book took me by surprise. I hadn’t read Five Children and It either and from the cover was expecting a serious story about the first World War. It was a pleasant read and I thought it was good how it gradually introduced reality of the high casualties that occurred during the war. I wasn’t sure what to make of the book as a whole though. Although you don’t need to read the original to appreciate this book I felt that there was probably a clever interweaving of the old and new stories that I was missing. I too am interested into what a younger reader will make of this.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.