Book review: Somebody Stop Ivy Pocket, by Caleb Krisp, illustrations by Barbara Cantini

Krisp, Caleb. Somebody Stop Ivy Pocket. Ill. By Barbara Cantini. (Ivy Pocket series, #2) Greenwillow, 2016. $17.99. 396p. ISBN 978-0-06-236437-1. Ages 10-14. P8Q9

krisp-somebody-stop-ivy-pocketThe heroine of Anyone but Ivy Pocket has escaped with the Clock Diamond, a magic necklace with a tendency to kill people, and has been adopted by Ezra and Mother Snagsby, coffin makers who use Ivy as a maid and accomplice in creating corpses for their business in 19th-century London. The villains from the first book return to haunt her as she tries to find her friend Rebecca from the first book and help a young woman find her missing brother. Much of the hilarious charm of this adventure comes from Ivy’s self-delusion that she is loved by her adoptive mother and the innocence in which she goes through life, not understanding that people she sees as friends are actually enemies. Drugged, kidnapped, and hunted, Ivy leads the reader on a crazy pace while she stays almost unbearably cheerful.

Verdict: This title from an Australian author (real name unknown) has an unbelievable number of deaths and movements to another world but stays riotously funny. The black and white illustrations are highlighted by the skinny bodies and huge eyes, especially of the remarkable protagonist. The planned Book 3 and conclusion is Bring Me the Head of Ivy Pocket. 

January 2017 review by Nel Ward.

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