FOR USE IN SCHOOLS AND LIBRARIES ONLY. When their adventures lead them to explore the biggest and scariest villain of all, Harry and George realize that they are not brave, only reckless and foolish.
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Lynne Reid Banks is a bestselling author for both children and adults. She grew up in London and became first an actress and then one of the first woman TV reporters in Britain before turning to writing. She now has more than forty books to her credit. Her classic children's novel, The Indian in the Cupboard, has sold more than ten million copies worldwide and was made into a popular feature film. Lynne lives with her husband in Dorset, England.
Tony Ross has illustrated many favorite books for children, including Lynne Reid Banks's Harry the Poisonous Centipede titles, the popular series about extra-terrestrial teacher Dr. Xargle by Jeanne Willis, and the Amber Brown books by Paula Danziger. Tony Ross lives in Cheshire, England.From School Library Journal:
Grade 3-4?Harry is warned by his mother, Belinda, never to ascend the mysterious "Up Pipe" (drain) or to travel to the "no-top-world" (surface) where the Hoo-Mins (humans) live. Still, encouraged by his fearless friend George, the two centipedes make several trips to these destinations, where they encounter dangerous creatures and barely make it home with their cuticles intact. Later on, when smoke invades their tunnel, the two frantically crawl through the "Up Pipe" and discover a gigantic "meat mountain" that they soon realize is a sleeping Hoo-Min. They escape just in time to scuttle down the pipe and revive the smoke-struck Belinda. Having learned the difference between bravery and foolhardiness, they live happily ever after. This simplistic fantasy is a stretch for even the most accepting readers. The characters never develop but remain insects who have human characteristics uncomfortably imposed upon them. The author is often didactic, defining potentially unfamiliar words or explaining the anatomy of centipedes. The humor is more silly than funny, and this attempt to present things through the eyes of insects is far-fetched and uninteresting. A disappointingly dull book.?Wendy D. Caldiero, New York Public Library
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