Gemma and Alice were born on the same day and have been devoted best friends ever since. Despite Gemma's larger-than-life personality and Alice's quieter, calmer character, the two are inseparable - until Alice has to move house, all the way to Scotland.
Gemma and Alice, born on the same day, have been devoted best friends ever since. Despite Gemma's larger-than-life personality and Alice's quieter, calmer character, the two are inseparable - until that is Alice has to move house, all the way to Scotland. Gemma is utterly distraught, particularly at the thought that Alice might find a new best friend. Is there anything Gem's brothers, or perhaps her grandad, can do to help? Established fans, especially male readers, will be delighted to re-encounter the flamboyant Biscuits, co-star of Buried Alive! and Cliffhanger. A charming, funny and touching story will be adored by all Wilson fans from 7 upwards.
Alice is my very best friend. I don't know what I'd do without her. Gemma and Alice have been best friends since they were born. It never seems to matter that Gemma loves football while Alice prefers drawing or that Gemma never stops talking while Alice is more likely to be listening. They share everything. Then one day Gemma finds out that there's something Alice isn't sharing. A secret. And when Gemma discovers what it is, she isn't sure if she and Alice can stay Best Friends Forever... 'A true children's writing genius' Good Book Guide A delightfully touching and entertaining story from best-selling, prize-winning Jacqueline Wilson - now with a new introduction by the author!
JACQUELINE WILSON is an extremely well-known and hugely popular author who served as Children's Laureate from 2005-7. She has been awarded a number of prestigious awards, including the British Children's Book of the Year and the Guardian Children's Fiction Award (for The Illustrated Mum), the Smarties Prize and the Children's Book Award (for Double Act, for which she was also highly commended for the Carnegie Medal). In 2002 Jacqueline was given an OBE for services to literacy in schools and in 2008 she was appointed a Dame. She was the author most borrowed from British libraries in the last decade. 'A brilliant writer of wit and subtlety' THE TIMES 'She should be prescribed for all cases of reading reluctance' INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY 'Has a rare gift for writing lightly and amusingly about emotional issues' BOOKSELLER
"There's no stopping Jacqueline ..." The Sunday Times 20050313 "Wilson tells a story of laughter, love, tears, and trouble in this hilarious tale" The Good Book Guide 20050701 "Read it. I'm sure you'll love it" Reading Matters 20050812 "As ever, the storytelling is superb, the language direct, and the author shows her great skill in seeing things from a child's perspective" South Wales Argus 20050212 "A really interesting book with something in it for everyone" Newcastle Upon Tyne Evening Chronicle 20060406
A delightfully entertaining and touching story from a superstar author
Gemma and Alice have been best friends from the day they were born. For real: Their mothers gave birth to them on the same day and they've been BFFs ever since - until the day that Alice's family moves to Scotland. Total opposites, Alice is feminine and well-behaved while Gemma has a propensity for causing calamities, which stages the action. A taxi-driving dad, two older brothers, a dog named Barking Mad, her mom who wants a curly-girly (like Alice), a fun-loving granddad and a fat classmate who loves to eat (named Biscuits) round out the cast. While stories about best friends separated by moving are plentiful, Wilson's British fillip makes this one original, with Gemma's strong first-person voice and personality and Sharratt's black-and-white drawings in strip-style sketches before each chapter teasing the reader and forecasting the next turn of events. Gemma's dilemmas - crying jags, chocolate binges, cake-throwing, special dolls and bracelets and birthday wishes - are sprinkled with British idioms; this will cause no problems for American readers, who will be grinning all the while. (Fiction. 9-12) (Kirkus Reviews)
There's no stopping Jacqueline . . .
A delightfully entertaining and touching story from a superstar author
Alice and I are best friends. I've known her all my life. That is absolutely true. Our mums were in hospital at the same time when they were having us. I got born first, at six o'clock in the morning on 3 August. Alice took ages and didn't arrive until four in the afternoon. We both had a long cuddle with our mums and at night time we were tucked up next to each other in little weeny cots. I expect Alice was a bit frightened. She'd have cried. She's actually still a bit of a crybaby now but I try not to tease her about it. I always do my best to comfort her. I bet that first day I called to her in baby-coo language. I'd say, 'Hi, I'm Gemma. Being born is a bit weird, isn't it? Are you OK?' And Alice would say, 'I'm not sure. I'm Alice. I don't think I like it here. I want my mum.' 'We'll see our mums again soon. We'll get fed. I'm starving .' I'd have started crying too, in case there was a chance of being fed straight away. I suppose I'm still a bit greedy, if I'm absolutely honest. Not quite as greedy as Biscuits though. Well, his real name is Billy McVitie, but everyone calls him Biscuits, even the teachers. He's this boy in our class at school and his appetite is astonishing. He can eat an entire packet of chocolate Hob Nobs, munch crunch, munch crunch, in two minutes flat. We had this Grand Biscuit Challenge at play time. I only managed three quarters of a packet. I probably could have managed a whole packet too but a crumb went down the wrong way and I choked. I ended up with chocolate biscuit drool all down the front of my white school blouse. But that's nothing new. I always seem to get a bit messy and scruffy and scuffed. Alice stays neat and sweet. When we were babies one of us crawled right into the rubbish bin and played mud wrestling in the garden and fell in the pond when we fed the ducks. The other one of us sat up prettily in her buggy cuddling Golden Syrup (her yellow teddy bear) and giggled at her naughty friend. When we went to nursery school one of us played Fireman in the water tank and Moles in the sand tray, and she didn't stop at Finger Painting, she did Entire Body Painting. The other one of us sat demurely at the dinky table and made plasticine necklaces (one for each of us) and sang 'Incy Wincy Spider' with all the cute hand gestures. When we went to infants school one of us pretended to be a Wild Thing and roared such terrible roars in class she got sent out of the room. She also got into a fight with a big boy who snatched her best friend's chocolate and made his nose bleed ! The other one of us read Milly-Molly-Mandy and wrote stories about a little thatched cottage in the country in her very neat printing. Now we're in the juniors one of us ran right into the boys' toilets for a dare. She did, really, and they all yelled at her. She also climbed halfway up the drainpipe in the playground to get her ball back only the drainpipe came away from the wall. They both went crash clonk . Mr Beaton the headteacher was NOT pleased. The other one of us got made a form monitor and wore her silver sparkly top to the school disco (with matching silver glitter on her eyelids) and all the boys wanted to dance with her, but guess what ! She danced with her bad best friend all evening instead. We're best friends but we're not one bit alike. I suppose that goes without saying. Though I seem to have said it a lot. My mum says it too. Also a lot. 'For heaven's sake, Gemma, why can't you stop being so rough and silly and boisterous? Boy being the operative bit! To think I was so thrilled when I had my baby girl. But now it's just like I've got three boys and you're the biggest tearaway of them all!' There's my big brother Callum who's seventeen. Callum and I used to be mates. He taught me to skateboard and showed me how to dive-bomb in the swimming baths. Every Sunday I'd balance on the back of his bike and we'd wobble over to Grandad's. But now Callum's got this girlfriend Ayesha and all they do is look into each other's eyes and go kissy-kissy-kiss. Yuck. Alice and I played spies and followed them to the park once because we wanted to see if they did anything even yuckier but Callum caught us and he turned me upside down and shoogled me until I felt sick. There's my other brother Jack, but he's nowhere near as much fun as Callum. Jack is dead brainy, such a swot that he always comes top in every exam. Jack hasn't got a girlfriend. He doesn't get out enough to meet any. He just holes up in his room, hunched over his homework. He does take our dog Barking Mad out for a walk very late at night. And he likes to wear black. And doesn't like garlic bread. Maybe Jack is turning into Jacula? I'll have to check his teeth aren't getting alarmingly pointy. It's annoying having Jack as my brother. Sometimes the teachers hope I'm going to be dead brainy too and get ten out of ten all the time. As if! I can do some things. Mr Beaton says I can talk the hind leg off a donkey and its front leg and its ears and its tail. He says I act like a donkey too. I think donkeys kick if you're not careful. I often feel like kicking Mr Beaton. I get lots of ideas and work things out as quick as quick in my head but it's soooo boring writing it all down so I often don't bother. Or I try to get Alice to write it all out for me. Alice gets much better marks than me for all lessons. Apart from football. I don't want to boast but I'm in the school football team even though I'm the youngest and the littlest and the only girl. Alice doesn't like sports at all. We have different hobbies. She likes to draw lines of little girls in party frocks and she writes in her diary with her gel pens and she paints her nails all different colours and plays with her jewellery. Alice is into jewellery in a big way. She keeps it in a special box that used to be her grandma's. It's blue velvet and if you wind it up and open the lid a little ballet dancer twirls round and round. Alice has got a little gold heart on a chain and a tiny gold bangle she wore when she was a baby and a jade bangle from an uncle in Hong Kong and a silver locket and a Scottie dog sparkly brooch and a charm bracelet with ten jingly charms. My favourite charm is the little silver Noah's Ark. You can open it up and see absolutely minute giraffes and elephants and tigers inside. Alice also has heaps of rings a real Russian gold ring, a Victorian garnet and lots of pretendy ones out of crackers. She gave me a big bright silver and blue one as a friendship ring. I loved it and called it my sapphire only I forgot to take it off when I went swimming and the silver went black and the sapphire fell out. 'Typical,' said Mum, sighing. I think Mum sometimes wishes she'd swapped the cots round when we were born. I'm sure she'd much rather have Alice as a daughter. She doesn't say so, but I'm not daft. I'd sooner have Alice as my daughter. 'I wouldn't,' said my dad, and he ruffled my hair so it stood up on end. Well, it was probably standing up anyway. I've got the sort of hair that looks like I'm permanently plugged into the electrics. Mum made me grow it long but I kept losing my silly bows and bobbles. Then it got a bit sticky when I went in for this giant bubble-blowing contest with Biscuits and the other boys and hurray hurray my hair had to be chopped off. Mum cried but I didn't mind one bit. I know you're not really meant to have favourites in your family but I think I love my dad more than my mum. I don't get to see him much because he drives a taxi and so he's up before I wake up, taking people to the airport, and often he's out till very late picking people up from the pub. When he is home he likes to lie on the sofa in front of the telly and have a little snooze. It's often a long long long snooze, but if you're feeling lonely you can cuddle up beside him. He pats you and mumbles, 'Hello, little Cuddle Bun,' and then goes back to sleep again. My grandad used to drive our cab but he's retired now, though he helps out when the car hire firm need an extra driver. They've got a white Rolls for weddings and Grandad once took me for a sneaky drive in it. He's lovely, my grandad. Maybe he's my all-time absolute favourite relative. He's always looked after me, right from when I was a baby. Our mum went back to work full time just as Grandad retired so he's acted like my child minder. He still meets me from school. We go back to Grandad's flat, which is right at the top of the tower block. You look out of Grandad's window and you see the birds flying past, it's just magical. On a clear day you can see for miles and miles across the town to the woods and hills of the countryside. Sometimes Grandad narrows his eyes and pretends he's looking through a telescope. He swears he's squinting all the way to the sea, but I think he's joking. He jokes a lot, my grandad. He calls me funn
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