My Rating: 4.5 hearts
Thoughts on the Novel: The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls by Claire Legrand was a delightfully creepy read (with great illustrations) that’s sure to appeal to MG and older readers alike!
Beginning innocently enough by introducing the reader to its protagonist, Victoria, a girl who strives for order and perfection, the plot takes a turn for the worse when Victoria’s friend – or as she would say, project – Lawrence disappears. Though his parents claim that Lawrence is at his grandmother’s house, Victoria believes differently and begins to seek answers. Her investigation leads her to Nine Silldie Place (aka The Cavendish Home) where ordinary things like a house and candies just aren’t what they seem, and the extraordinary appears to be all too possible.
As a villain, I loved Mrs. Cavendish! Her black and white thinking about what’s appropriate can easily be contrasted with Victoria’s; but unlike Victoria, she’s willing to go to extreme lengths to ensure that everybody conforms to her ideals. Her coaching methods are actually kind of reminiscent of Dolores Umbridge’s.
I also loved Victoria because she knows exactly who she is and dares you to try and mould her to be different. Her no-nonsense attitude, stubbornness, and lack of apology about her personality made her the perfect match for Mrs. Cavendish.
A story that’s perfectly paced to maximize tension and keep readers guessing about all the secrets harboured at The Cavendish Home, The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls was released in August 2012 by Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers.
Comments About the Cover: It’s a bit misleading because Victoria only gets curious about The Cavendish Home once Lawrence disappears. Lawrence – at least I’m assuming that it’s him – should therefore not really be on the cover.