‘Hamish & The Worldstoppers’ by Danny Wallace

Watch out, David Walliams. Danny Wallace has got his funny on and it’s HA HA HA HA HA on every page of his debut children’s book for 7+ years: Hamish & The Worldstoppers.

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What would you do if the whole world just stopped? Yes. The WHOLE WORLD. Birds in the air. Planes in the sky. And every single person on the planet – except you! Because that’s what keeps happening to ten-year-old Hamish Ellerby. And it’s being caused by the Worldstoppers and their terrifying friends The Terribles! They have a plan: they want to take our world for their won… Oh, and they HATE children. Especially if you’re a child who knows about them. Hang on – you know now, don’t you? Oh dear.

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Hamish Ellerby is having a rough time. His father has disappeared, his mother is bogged down in a job she loathes, his brother is being all teenagery and cool and at school he is tormented by bullies called Scratch and Mole. And it’s not as if Hamish can run off and hunt down some adventures in the village because Starkley is the most boring place to live, ever. And the latest headline in the Starkley Post is proof of this: ‘MAN LEAVES TOWN, WILL PROBABLY COME BACK IN A BIT.’ But then the Pauses start and Hamish discovers there is far more going on in Starkley than first meets the eye. And while his pal, Robin, thinks he’d probably just eat hamburgers and cheese if the world were to stop, Hamish decides there are FAR more important things to be doing…

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Moontrug was won over by Hamish for two reasons: he carries a Chomp everywhere he goes and every week he saves 10p of his pocket money for ‘old age.’ And the friends he eventually discovers – the other children who can move in the Pauses – are fabulously drawn: from Alice (signature moves: brow furrow, withering glance and elbow chop) and Buster (signature move: The Guilty Lizard – no one really knows what this is) to Eliot (who will one day go on to be Prime Minister. Of Sweden) and Venk (who secretly wishes he was in a boy band).

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Wallace’s sense of humour pervades every page, from Hamish’s neighbours The Ramsfaces who ‘were a strange little family who all played the ukelele together at night and sang unusual songs about boats’ to Madame Couscous’s International World of Treats which sells Vomit Comets and only allows one and a quarter school children in the shop at a time. He’s every bit as funny as Walliams, if not funnier, and children will laugh out loud at the silliness, jokes, ridiculous names and absurd personalities. The book is brilliantly packaged, with fantastic illustrations by Jamie Littler, and kids who get distracted easily (like Moontrug) will love the way the pages are laid out: funky fonts, lists, newspaper headlines, fact files, rule books. But Wallace doesn’t just give us bags of laughs – like Roald Dahl he touches on loss, bullying, adventure and peril. Moontrug loved this book and is very excited to see Wallace has more in store for us – take a little peek at www.worldofhamish.com…

 

 

 

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