Tricks and treats
They all involve pranks that backfire. In the opening story, Andy pretends to be dead to get out of school. His parents dig a grave in the garden, drop him in and start the last rites. In an entertaining game of bluff, double-bluff and counter-bluff, Andy refuses to give hem the last laugh and they begin to cover his body with earth. When he eventually bursts gasping from the grave, his father keels over with a "heart attack". Andy tries to give the kiss of life. As his dad guffaws, Andy realises the joke's on him. Never mind: as he says, "At least I got the day off school." Other stories are equally satisfying for Year 4 readers upwards.
Griffiths writes in the well-paced short sentences that are the trademark of fellow Australians Paul Jennings and Morris Gleitzman, who also make a hit with this age group. He has also produced Just Annoying!, another collection with a similar feel-good appeal.
For teachers' notes, tel 020 7881 8098. See also the Andy Griffiths.