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My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece

Cover of My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece

My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece

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Ten-year-old Jamie Matthews has just moved to the Lake District with his dad and his teenage sister Jasmine for a "fresh new start." Five years ago, his sister's twin, Rose, was blown up by a terrorist bomb. His parents are wrecked by their grief, and Jasmine turns to piercing and pink hair and stops eating. The family falls apart. But Jamie hasn't cried in all that time. To him Rose is just a distant memory. Jamie is far more interested in his cat, Roger, his birthday Spider-Man T-shirt, and in keeping his new friend Sunya a secret from his dad—and in his deep longing and unshakable belief that his mum will come back to the family that she walked out on months ago. When he sees a TV advertisement for a talent show, he feels certain that this will change everything and bring them all back together once and for all.

Ten-year-old Jamie Matthews has just moved to the Lake District with his dad and his teenage sister Jasmine for a "fresh new start." Five years ago, his sister's twin, Rose, was blown up by a terrorist bomb. His parents are wrecked by their grief, and Jasmine turns to piercing and pink hair and stops eating. The family falls apart. But Jamie hasn't cried in all that time. To him Rose is just a distant memory. Jamie is far more interested in his cat, Roger, his birthday Spider-Man T-shirt, and in keeping his new friend Sunya a secret from his dad—and in his deep longing and unshakable belief that his mum will come back to the family that she walked out on months ago. When he sees a TV advertisement for a talent show, he feels certain that this will change everything and bring them all back together once and for all.

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About the Author-
  • Annabel Pitcher graduated from Oxford University with a degree in English Literature and went on to edit television scripts for the comedy Harry Hill and the long-running soap opera Coronation Street. Annabel started writing My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece longhand in Ecuador, on a round-the-world trip. She lives in Yorkshire with her husband.

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from July 23, 2012
    In this powerfully honest, quirkily humorous debut novel, first published in the U.K., 10-year-old narrator Jamie and his family are still dealing with his sister Rose’s death in a terrorist bombing five years earlier. After Rose’s twin, Jas, stakes her independence by dying her hair pink on her 15th birthday, the family falls apart—their mother runs off with another man, and their alcoholic father moves from London to the Lake District with the children, where he lavishes attention on Rose’s urn. (In one of many heartbreaking details, Rose’s parents cremated part of their daughter’s remains and buried the rest, a devastating metaphor for the family’s ongoing inability to handle the tragedy.) Jamie’s pivotal friendship with a Muslim girl, Sunya, is a standout. Pitcher tackles grief, prejudice, religion, bullying, and familial instability through the unsentimental voice of a boy who loves Spider-Man and Manchester United, misses his mother, and—truth be told—doesn’t remember his dead sister all that well. The adults in Pitcher’s story may be a mess, but the kids are all right. Ages 12–up. Agent: Catherine Clarke, Felicity Bryan Literary Agency.

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    Blackstone Audio, Inc.
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My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece
My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece
Annabel Pitcher
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