Set in opal mining country (Lightning Ridge) we follow Ashmol’s account of how his little sister, Kellyanne, loses her two imaginary friends, Pobby and Dingan, which sets off some very real life issues. The only way that Ashmol can figure out how to fix things is to find the pair for her. But no-one can see them other than Kellyanne.
It sounded cute. Not to mention I misread the blurb and thought it had said that Kellyanne had gone missing with her imaginary friends and they would help lead Ashmol to her (I was tired and in the middle of the book fair which requires fast decision making). That’s my fault for not reading properly. However, Rice has a lot to explain.
Like how old is Ashmol? Seriously, nothing is really mentioned about him. I first thought he was a teenager and then questioned that later in the story. There were no real concrete details given about this kid, I just don’t know who he is, how he sounds, whether he’s shorter than I am or taller. That bothered me, not knowing if he was a little kid or older (not the height).
The language, grrr. Oh my god, can we please step away from the over the top Aussie slang, please? No-one speaks like that. No bogans speak like that. I have yet met anyone who uses half of the vocabulary that was used here and I am Australian and live in the country. It was annoying. Borderline insulting.
The one thing I didn’t hate was the oddness, which of course was what initially drew me to the book. Imaginary friends and a little girl who refuses to disbelieve and somehow forces her brother to believe through a very big and dangerous situation. That was appealing. And though I was annoyed for most of it, I liked how things turned and changed and then ended. It’s not like a lot of other books that have to have a happy ending *spoiler in a way* or that it was easy to predict what was going to next. That was something different and fun.
And now I’m a little afraid to upload this review as so many people have left glowing responses. Don’t hate on this little reader, though, I tried my best to like it and yet couldn’t. Of course, the only way to know if this is for you is to read it, and I have a copy if anyone is interested.