There are many reasons why I love having a daughter, but one of them is definitely being able to read Jacqueline Wilson books! I always liked the look of Jacqueline Wilson books, but boys wouldn’t touch them with a bargepole (not just my boys, any boys). She writes the most incredibly moving stories about girls in believable situations, which have made me cry on more occasions than I dare to admit.
My daughter and I have been reading Jacqueline Wilson books since she was about 5 – helpfully she writes books from early readers, like my daughter’s old favourite, The Dinosaur’s Packed Lunch, right through to young adult. But her main audience is most definitely girls nearing the end of primary school. Girls just like my daughter.
Katy is a very special book. It is a very clever 21st century update of the 1872 classic story What Katy Did, by Susan Coolidge. I’ve never read What Katy Did, but, having read up on it, it actually follows the plot remarkably closely. But there is no need to read What Katy Did to enjoy Katy. It is a brilliant book in its own right.
Katy is the eldest of six siblings – one full sister, one step-sister and three half brothers and sisters. Like many of Jacqueline Wilson’s young heroines, Katy’s mother has died, and she misses her terribly. She resents her stepmother, Izzie, and step-sister, Elsie, and can often be rebellious, but her siblings all adore her.
When Katy has a terrible accident, everything changes. Suddenly she is very reliant on Izzie and the accident brings her closer to both Izzie and Elsie. With the help of Helen, a family friend, she learns to appreciate what she has and knows she must make the most of her life.
Katy is a fantastic read. My 10 year old daughter loved it and so did I.
Be warned – you will definitely need tissues!