It’s my turn on the BlogTour The Turkey Shed Gang by Ruth Young.
About the Author
Ruth has been a teacher for a very long time. She loves being in the classroom making learning fun and specialises in teaching reading and spelling. Now retired, Ruth teaches children with learning difficulties at her home, and it doesn’t matter how old they are, she loves to help!
Ruth has always told stories to the children she teaches. Her book, The Turkey Shed Gang, is for 7–8-year-old independent readers. She also writes for dyslexic children in mind so that they can read a book, maybe with a little help, which is age appropriate for them.
When she’s not teaching, Ruth loves walking in the Surrey Hills where she lives with her husband, who is a retired airline Captain. They take every chance to travel worldwide and it’s on trips away that Ruth comes up with her ideas for her books, always scribbling notes down in her purple notebook which she carries everywhere.
Ruth loves baking bread and cakes and is always in the kitchen with her vast collection of cookery books. She has been interviewed by the BBC three times about writing, environmental issues and her work with dyslexic children, and had an article published in a national magazine for parents. Follow @ruthyoung6 on Instagram or ruth.young.127 on Facebook.
About the book
Joe had a bad day at school. Everything went wrong…
FIRSTLY, he had to read to the class and that was his worst nightmare, reading in front of everyone. THEN, he scored an own goal in football. LATER, after eating three chocolate eclairs at Gran’s house, she tells him about a raid in the bank this morning. The robbers had guns and monster masks! To Joe it sounded exciting, if only he could have been there too!
But his opinion soon changes when he realises the danger his Gran is now faced with. She shows him a bag full of money that she picked up by mistake, thinking it was her shopping after the raid. Joe decides the only thing to do to keep her safe is for them to go on the run. They must go before the police come to arrest her or worse still, the robbers find out she has their money. To add to his problems, Gran wants to take Mr Percival with them, a talking parrot she inherited from a neighbour.
A school boy, his gran and a parrot on the run, what could possibly go wrong?
Joe has it tough. He is ridiculed, laughed at and then he gets a little overeager at a football match. Overall, not a very good day at all, so it’s a relief to take a time out with his Gran – oh and her newly acquired friend called Mr Percival.
Mr Percival is a bit of a wild card – he says the first thing that pops into his little head, often with hilarious results. He does make the perfect getaway companion for the double act of Joe and his Gran though. They are on the run, because that’s what criminals do – they run and hide.
It’s a read I would recommend to advanced readers 8-plus, however I would be mindful of the bullying, discrimination and lack of support the main character receives from his peers at the beginning of the story, and the lack of support from adults who are supposed to be keeping him safe. They are learning moments but could be upsetting to some younger readers.
Aside from that it is a funny adventure with endearing characters. What’s lovely is the way young Joe is willing to do anything to keep his Gran safe – it becomes an exercise in character and confidence building. Just because you may not be perfect at one thing it doesn’t mean you won’t excel at something else or find a new way to achieve your goals.