Friday, 7 November 2014
Review: Awful Auntie by David Walliams
Publisher: HarperCollins Children's Books
Format: Hardcover / eBook
Released: September 25th, 2014
Aunt Alberta is on a mission to cheat the young Lady Stella Saxby out of her inheritance – Saxby Hall. But with mischievous and irrepressible Soot, the cockney ghost of a chimney sweep, alongside her Stella is determined to fight back… And sometimes a special friend, however different, is all you need to win through.
Awful Auntie is the best David Walliams book I've read so far; I loved it all and can only imagine how excited younger readers will get when they have this book in their hands. It's not quite as sad as the other two Walliams books I've read (Gangsta Granny and Demon Dentist), but it still made me well up at the end. I got so attached to Soot and Stella that it was hard not to!
This book is about Lady Stella Saxby, rightful heir of Saxby Hall, and her horrid, manipulative evil Aunt Alberta. Aunt Alberta has a pet Great Bavarian Mountain Owl called Wagner, and will do absolutely anything to own Saxby Hall. And when I say anything, I mean anything, including killing Stella's parents and trying to kill her! She really is a wretched woman that I gleefully loved to hate, and I'll admit I did a little cheer at the end.
Every single character in this book is brilliant, whether they're good or bad, dead or alive. From poor orphaned Lady Stella, to Soot the ghostly chimney sweep to Gibbon the ancient butler, everyone is truly hard to forget. Walliams writes with a warmth and prose befitting his characters, and there's no way anyone could come into possession of this book and not like it. It's an impossibility!
Awful Auntie is quite long for a children's book, but believe me when I say I could have carried on reading for another three hundred pages. I laughed, I almost cried, I gasped, I exclaimed... basically every emotion was tapped into. It's an excellent book all round - Walliams's best yet, surely? - and so much fun to read. You'll be appalled at horrid Aunt Alberta and the despicable things she gets up to, while simultaneously thinking she's really quite clever. But not clever enough!
Awful Auntie is one of the best children's books of the year, there's no doubt about it. David Walliams has proved that being a celebrity doesn't mean you can't write good books, and I only hope his status doesn't put anyone off discovering a ridiculously talented author. I for one will definitely be boarding the Walliams train for all future journeys from here on out, and I do hope he can keep up this high standard. He certainly deserves to.