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Thursday, 21 July 2016

BE FRANK WITH ME book review

BE FRANK WITH ME by JULIA CLAIBORNE JOHNSON




THE BLURB

Reclusive literary legend M. M. “Mimi” Banning has been holed up in her Bel Air mansion for years, but now she’s writing her first book in decades and to ensure timely completion her publisher sends an assistant to monitor her progress. Mimi reluctantly complies—with a few stipulations: No Ivy Leaguers or English majors. Must drive, cook, tidy. Computer whiz. Good with kids. Quiet, discreet, sane.

When Alice Whitley arrives at the Banning mansion, she’s put to work right away—as a full-time companion to Frank, the writer’s eccentric nine-year-old, a boy with the wit of Noël Coward, the wardrobe of a 1930s movie star, and very little in common with his fellow fourth graders.

As she gets to know Frank, Alice becomes consumed with finding out who his father is, how his gorgeous “piano teacher and itinerant male role model” Xander fits into the Banning family equation—and whether Mimi will ever finish that book.

Full of heart and countless only-in-Hollywood moments, Be Frank With Me is a captivating and heartwarming story of an unusual mother and son, and the intrepid young woman who finds herself irresistibly pulled into their unforgettable world.

Hardback Released 4th August 2016



MY REVIEW


Received a copy of this out of the blue from the publishers, Corvus books, so thankyou to them.  I've been a big fan of the recent books featuring children as the main character and once you read about Frank, he is one of those characters that will be staying with you for a very long while!

His background isn't your normal start in life! His mother is the reclusive author, Mimi Banning, who had such a big hit with her first novel, that she retreated to her Bel Air mansion and is rarely seen out.  Not the best start in life for Frank, but it allows you to understand how he has turned into the special boy that he is now aged 9!  He dresses in his own special way and is a walking encyclopedia of film facts from the bygone era, and that doesn't allow him to fit in too well at school.

Annie is brought in by Mimi's publishers to move in with her to keep her mind on writing another novel, so she then gets to witness up close the special bond mother and son have, and soon finds herself totally caught up in their world and tries to help Frank discover who his father is and help this quirky little boy find his way in the world and stop people walking out on him

This really was a special story to read, and was full of fun wondering how Frank would dress, or what he would say next as he never does anything by the book.  He is often quite a trying child as he does display some very irrational behaviour, but at the heart of it you discover an extremely thoughtful young man with a heart of gold and this shines through.

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