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Jacqueline Wilson's Victorian version of growth mindset: the class book review

Jacqueline Wilson's new novel features an evil stepmother, a magical doll and a heroine whose name belies her rotten luck. Our reviewers were shocked, but excited

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Jacqueline Wilson's new novel features an evil stepmother, a magical doll and a heroine whose name belies her rotten luck. Our reviewers were shocked, but excited

Title: Clover Moon
Author: Jacqueline Wilson
Illustrator: Nick Sharratt
Publisher: Doubleday Children’s

Teacher review of Clover Moon, by Jacqueline Wilson

Mind-blowing, mysterious, adventurous, exciting, powerful and moving were just some of the words my class of Year 4s gave me when I asked them to describe their feelings towards Jacqueline Wilson's new book, Clover Moon.

It is a dramatic, historical story. The setting of Victorian London made this a shocking and difficult read at times. But, thanks to the descriptions and delicate word choice, the children sympathised with interest and empathy.

Because of its historical setting, this book engaged both girls and boys, which is sometimes a rarity in fiction for this age.

Clover Moon, Jacqueline Wilson, Victorian London, book review

The main character, Clover, is an excellent example of characterisation and her grit and determination is clear throughout. Considering her name, Clover certainly doesn’t appear to have much luck. This in itself, was an interesting discussion point. In our school, we have a large ethos of a growth mindset. As part of this, the children are encouraged to persevere, embrace challenges and be inspired by others. As many of the children noted, Clover Moon is an excellent example of this.

As a teacher, I was delighted to see the engagement, interest and inquisitive nature of the class really flourish as they read this book. We loved reading about Clover’s experience in the dollmaker’s shop and all of us could really imagine her magical doll creation. Audible gasps were heard around the class when we heard about Clover’s stepmother’s treatment of her.

If you are looking for a great fictional read, which approaches some difficult concepts but in an intriguing and sensitive way, then this book is a great read for you and your class.  Expect the children to be shocked but excited by this brilliant book. 

Sarah Hepworth is Year 4 teacher and literacy lead at Duston Eldean Primary School in Northampton.

Pupil review

Clover Moon, Jacqueline Wilson, Victorian London, book review

If you or your class would like to write a review for TES, please contact Adi Bloom, on adi.bloom@tesglobal.com

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