Simon Kesselbeck is having a terrible week. First he has a nightmare in which he finds himself going up in the lift in the hotel where his mum works as a cook. But the lift doesn’t stop on the eighth floor, as it should. Instead it zooms out of the roof and becomes a train. Then, when he wakes up, he finds he has lost his voice: he can’t even manage a whisper or read out his essay at school. Could all this be due to the girl Annalena he fell madly in love with at the swimming pool?
He falls into the pool, then crashes into a glass door. Then he bumps into Annalena again, and, oh bliss!, she stops and talks to him. But of course, being Simon, he doesn’t manage a reply. It is indeed a miracle, and little thanks to him, that all comes right in the end.
The story is superbly written and is spilling over with irony and wit. The perfect read-aloud to younger children, and for an older age-group too. Friedrich Ani proves himself a man of many talents, as much at home in children’s literature as he is in detective novels. This one stands out for its warmth and genuine charm.
All recommendations from Spring 2008