Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

A Midsummer Tights Dream

A Midsummer Tights Dream

Louise Rennison
Fiction  Series
For ages 12 and up
HarperCollins, 2012   ISBN: 978-0061799365

Tallulah Casey is thrilled because her parents (who don’t do much in the parenting department) have agreed to let their daughter return to Dother Hall in Yorkshire to continue her performing arts studies. Tallulah is happy not only because she will be able to work on her almost non-existent acting, dancing, and singing skills, but because she will also be reunited with her dear friends Vaisey, Jo, Flossie, and Honey. She looks forward to hanging out with little Ruby, whose dad runs the Blind Pig pub, and her dog Matilda. Then there is Ruby’s big brother Alex, the thought of whom makes Tallulah’s nobbly knees go weak.

   Tallulah is feeling optimistic because she is a new and improved Tallulah. Instead of being a “shy and gangly with nobbly knees and no sticky-out bits,” Tallulah is now blessed with chesty bits (small ones) and her cousin Georgia has educated Tallulah about boys and the snogging scale. Tallulah is ready for anything.

   Well, almost anything. She is not really ready to deal with Cain Hinchcliff, one of the local bad boys who makes Tallulah feel very confused and annoyed. She especially does not know what to do when Cain licks (yes licks!) a hailstone off Tallulah’s nose. What on earth was that all about?

  Things get even more complicated when Charlie apologizes for kissing her when he saw her in the summer. He has a girlfriend whom he cares about very much indeed. Tallulah feels strangely upset by this information, but her feelings about Charlie are nothing to compared to the feelings she has when she finds out that Alex, her dream boy who calls her nice things and writes to her, has a girlfriend too. Tallulah is bereft. Now she has no one who cares about her. The situation is made even worse when Honey announces that she will be going to Hollywood, and when the school principal announces that Dother Hall is in dire financial straits. Somehow money has to be raised to support the school or it will have to close. For good.

   This second Tallulah Casey title is deliciously funny and peculiar, and readers need to know that reading it in public can be hazardous because of spontaneous laughter issues. Readers will enjoy following Tallulah’s new adventures and they will surely commiserate with the girl who finds boys completely confusing, and who has trouble stopping her legs from breaking out in wild Irish dancing behavior whenever she is stressed or anxious.