The Fair is the only good thing that happens every year. And Fiona Larson is the only person in town who’s never been.
She’s pretended to go – but she’s never been allowed. Because, before Fiona was even born, her sister died there.
This year, everything will be different.
Fiona is about to turn twelve – older than her sister was. This summer, Fiona will save some money, make new friends, and finally have some fun at The Fair.
But what she’ll actually do is:
– Find a mysterious bag in a bush
– Spy on everyone
– Lose her only friend
– Make a lot of lists
– Learn the truth about what happened at The Fair…
Can I just start with how painfully, painfully accurate and familiar Hulse’s depiction of a 90s British childhood is?! Throughout All The Fun Of The Fair, I cringed, grimaced, and winced at the school memories I had hoped to forget. How the seemingly innocent actions can haunt you for the rest of your school days (such as wearing the wrong colour socks, or in my case, mentioning walnuts – five years that followed me for – FIVE).
All The Fun Of The Fair is wonderfully written. You feel every joy, frustration, excitement, and anxiety. The protagonist, Fiona, is twelve trying to make sense of the world around her and find out what happened to her sister, Danielle, at the fair all those years ago. But adults are so damn confusing and complicated. They say they won’t get angry and then they shout, and there’s always a “Not now” or a “Maybe” or a “When you’re older”. And, on top of it all, trying to keep one of your only friendships going and never-ending school politics.
It really blew my mind how Hulse managed to write a book that was simultaenously funny, serious, and in parts, a little creepy. The complexity of the characters alone is phenomenal – they feel so real, like they could really be someone you know: your mum, friend, neighbour.
I thoroughly enjoyed All The Fun Of The Fair. It’s highly relatable and would make a fun choice for a book club over the Summer.
Huge thanks to Tracy at Compulsive Readers and Orion for inviting me to be part of this blog tour and providing a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Support your local bookshop by buying this book through them or through Hive.co.uk.
Will you be reading For All The Fun Of The Fair? Let me know in the comments below.
Wishing you a bookish week,