slice of moon

Sandi takes us on an adventure with her new book, one which starts in Ireland in the 1840s and ends up New York, although there will be a sequel, one which will be even more dangerous & exciting as our heroine reaches Portland, Oregon.

Slim’s family are poor but happy until the potato harvest fails and – since this is the only food they regularly eat – starvation seems sure to follow. They lose everything they hold dear, and the family seems likely to break apart as tensions erupt between her elder brother and her parents, but eventually they unite in a common cause to find America.

Slim’s father is a teacher and a spinner of stories, which gives the book its title. On the one hand they are can be seen as slices of the moon, just pie in the sky; on the other hand, telling ourselves what we believe really matters can help us to understand the world, and to take proper action. So the family carries with them not just a tiny piece of Irish turf but also a printing press, in order to make newspapers when they arrive in the New World.

This is a page-turning narrative with moments of pathos and comedy that will make you long for the next book and marvel at what refugees can endure to start a new life.

Susie Nicklin

Doubleday Children s/9780857531919/£9.99