I am delighted to be today’s stop on the ‘Stand by Me,’blog tour. I am always on the look out for new titles which might tempt fans of Jacqueline Wilson or Cathy Cassidy and think I may just have found one here.
‘Stand by me’ is the brilliant sequel to ‘Time After Time’ and follows the adventures of best friends, Molly and Beth. Although things were tense when their families first moved in together, the girls have managed to maintain their friendship and are about to embark on another time-travelling adventure together.
During a cup of blossom tea and cake with Molly and Beth’s favourite uncle, Graham, the girls use their detective skills (definitely not snooping skills) to get to the bottom of why he seems so upset. They discover it concerns a long-lost friend from Graham’s childhood and become set on travelling back to the 1960s and trying to put things right.
I particularly enjoyed the parts of the story where the girls had travelled back in time – they provided really interesting insights into what life was like just a few decades ago. Schools, clothes, trends and manners are all touched upon and the way towns changed over time is also highlighted. It was funny imagining Molly and Beth marvelling at money pre-decimalisation and wondering what a phone book was. I certainly learnt a few things too!
On a more serious note, it also highlighted how society’s attitudes towards children with disabilities have changed. It’s hard to imagine that it was once acceptable to send a child with a visual impairment to a ‘special school’ because it was considered too painful to allow them to live and study alongside ‘normal’ children. In today’s more inclusive society it seems particularly cruel.
Although dealing with some sensitive issues, this book also has buckets of humour and warmth. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to people who are fans of books set in real-life, with just a smattering of time travel thrown in for good measure!
*Many thanks to The O’Brien Press for sending me this title to review*