'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Monday 2 August 2010

Review: The Remarkable Secret of Aurelie Bonhoffen

Title: The Remarkable Secret of Aurelie Bonhoffen

Author: Deborah Abela

Publisher: Random House, $15.95 RRP

Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781741660951

For ages: 8 – 12

Type: Novel

About: Aurelie Bonhoffen lives in an amusement park on the pier with her family – her parents, grandmother, two crazy uncles and all the performers.

Aurelie has just turned twelve and is about to learn the big Bonhoffen family secret. It is something that will bring ghosts and all other manner of secrets, including lost love, into her world.

On top of that, the Mayor of the town is involved in an evil plan to remove Aurelie’s family from the pier and, as they attempt all sorts of things to get them out, they learn a few things about the Bonhoffens.

This is a family that will not be messed with, one that has ghosts with hidden talents on their side, and a family that refuses to be torn apart.

Will this remarkable family manage to stay together? Can they keep their home on the pier? And what will become of the Mayor with questionable ethics and priorities?

The Remarkable Secret of Aurelie Bonhoffen showcases Abela’s most incredible talent – creating characters that are real, loveable, believable and quirky.

This family is different to most others, with their circus lifestyle and tradition of tricks and performances – not to mention the ghosts that live among them.

Yet their struggles will ring true to all readers, as they face bullying and the loss of everything they hold dear. Messages of love, loyalty and overcoming adversity bring the tale to a heartwarming end.

Readers will fall in love with the hilarious twin uncles within the first few pages, and the other characters shortly thereafter. We feel the family’s pain at the thought of losing their beloved home – to them, their whole life – and silently cheer along as they fight to stay together.

This is a story that will quickly become a family favourite.

This book is available online

Author website

Teaching notes