Cassidy is about to start Year 7 in her new secondary school, complete with her brother’s too big blazer, and her shoes with the kittens on them as her dog has chewed one of her new pair. This sentence really sums up Cassidy’s worries about starting a new school, even though her best friends Molly and Shenice will be there. In fact things go quite well and when her parents are called in to see Mr. Bearman, and Cassidy learns she has come top of the CATs test and is invited to join the Quiz Team to compete against other schools, life feels pretty good. But then Molly begins to fancy her older brother Liam who has a rock band, and the dog chews her knickers in front of the boy Cassidy fancies who leads the quiz team and things go downhill. Cassidy then finds out that the other C. Bond in her year is in fact the one who came first in the CATs test not her and she decides to leave the quiz team. Nathan persuades her that she is needed and she is instrumental in winning the regional quiz round, Molly comes third in the school’s Got Talent competition and her brother’s band comes second and the twins are born, making way for a sequel!
This is great fun, capturing perfectly the difficult transition to secondary school, especially wearing a too large blazer, hand-me-down or new. It is good that Cassidy is thrilled to be top of the tests instead of being the most sought-after girl– it makes being a bit clever the thing to be which is a good role model for girls, and the jokey style, with inputs from Cassidy’s lists, does not mask the picture of her normal home life, especially when her Dad pays for the rectifying of her disastrous experiment with highlights for her hair! The angst of falling out with a friend is not hidden and the difficulty of making it up rings very true. Girls from 9+ will enjoy this and be looking out for the sequel.