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Book Title: Double Act

Details: Author: Wilson, Jacqueline

Reading Age: 10 - 11

Publisher: Transworld

ISBN-13: 9780440867593

Number of pages: 192

Dimensions: 18.8 x 13 x 1.6 cm

Retail Price: €8.74

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  • €8.50

Book Details

Product Description
Ten-year-old Ruby and Garnet are identical twins who do everything together. Especially since their mother died three years earlier. They dress alike, wear their hair the same, and sit together in every class. In fact, everything about them is the same--except their personalities. Ruby is funny and outgoing, Garnet is sensitive and shy. Together they're the perfect double act--and that's just the way they like it.
Soon the twins' life is turned upside down. Their dad has been spending a lot of time with his new 'friend' Rose. Ruby and Garnet can't stand Rose. To make matters worse, Dad and Rose buy a bookstore out in the country and the whole family moves. Ruby hates their new school, but Garnet thinks it isn't all that bad. When Garnet befriends some of their new classmates, Ruby feels betrayed and stops speaking to Garnet. Garnet misses her sister terribly, but has to admit it's nice doing things on her own for a change. Somehow, the girls will have to find a way to maintain their special twin relationship without spending every minute of the day together.

Publishers Weekly
An unexceptional mix of familiar plot devices, this British import is almost gratingly obvious. Ten-year-old twins Ruby and Garnet take turns narrating, and although their voices aren't especially different, they are meant to be opposites. Ruby is outgoing, Garnet shy; Ruby leads, Garnet follows. Their mother has died long ago, and now their father has a girlfriend, whom they immediately reject. The four move from the city to the country, where the twins are desperately unhappy. Serious issues, like the burdens of twinhood and the difficulties of forging independent identities, become lost amid a surfeit of frothy subplots, including an audition for a TV show and a plan to enter a ritzy boarding school. The narration is frequently cloying, as in Ruby's comments about her father's taste for classic literature: 'If we have a look at Dad's book we wonder what the Dickens they're about and they seem very Hardy, but Dad likes them.' The brittle nature of Wilson's (Elsa, Star of the Shelter) writing finds its extension in her glib resolution of the conflicts, and the illustrations, rendered as if by Ruby and Garnet, are as flat and unrevealing as the story. Ages 9-12. (Mar.)

School Library Journal
Gr 4-6A story written in the form of a journal with identical twin sisters writing in turns. The 10-year-old girls have always relished their twinship: making it impossible for people to tell them apart, working out signals so they can pretend to sneeze simultaneously, toss their braids in perfect synchronization, etc. At least, Ruby has always loved itbut then she's the dominant, extroverted one. Garnet seems to have been going along for the ride, safe in Ruby's shadow. When the twins' lives begin to changea new girlfriend for their father, and then a new job in a new town with the corresponding new school for his daughterstheir relationship is suddenly ripe for examination. When Ruby persuades her to audition for a TV series, Garnet rises to the occasion but is paralyzed with fear and subsequently guilt-ridden to have spoiled Ruby's chance at stardom. Next, Ruby plots their escape from home by applying to boarding school, but only Garnet passes the entrance exam. In the throes of making the decision to attend, she finds inner strength, and in finally acknowledging her twin's separate identity, Ruby affirms her love. Though the twins' voices are not always clearly differentiated as to vocabulary and style, their characters and interests are consistently distinct. Black-and-white cartoons add to the generally lighthearted tone. This is a solid but not a stunning read.Miriam Lang Budin, Mt. Kisco Public Library, NY

Kirkus Reviews
From Wilson (The Suitcase Kid, 1997, etc.), a lightweight British import that is a telling study of twindom's trials and tribulations. Doing their best to make everyone miserable in the process, ten-year-old identical twins Ruby and Garnet reluctantly adapt to changes in their family and themselves in this revealin"

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