Published by Andersen Press on 5th February 2015
Genres: Children's Fiction, Contemporary, Issues, Realistic Fiction
Source: Publisher, Purchased from Amazon
Buy on Amazon US • Buy on Amazon UK
Stanley 'Carrot' Harris is ginger, tubby and definitely not cool. And he has a secret: he's adopted, and this makes him feel like he's never quite fitted in.
On his thirteenth birthday, he receives the one thing he's been waiting his whole life for: a card from his long-lost birth mother, asking to meet up. But Stanley isn't sure: what if he's a big disappointment to her? So he hatches a plan - and he's going to need a stand-in Stanley, someone who is handsome, sporty and God's Gift to Mothers.
What Stanley doesn't realise is he's about to have the most confusing time of his life . . . just who is the real Stanley Carrot?
Reviewed by Casper – age 9
*I received a paperback copy of this book from Andersen Press in exchange for a review*
This book is about boy called Stanley. He’s adopted and lives with his mum and dad and his brother, Bruno. Stanley sometimes feels left out because Bruno always gets the attention from their mum and dad. Stanley starts wondering if it’s because Bruno is their “real” child and he’s not. On his 13th birthday, he gets a card from his birth mum and she includes her phone number. He really wants to meet her but he’s worried she won’t like him so he pays someone else to pretend to be him.
I really liked this book. There were funny parts in it, like when Nan was at Stanley’s house. Nan made me laugh a lot and she was one of my favourite characters. I liked Stanley’s cousin Chloe because she helped him find someone to be him. I did get confused by the way Chloe spoke though. I really didn’t like Jack, he was soooooo rude! Oh, and there was a character called Mr Potter! I love the Harry Potter books so I thought that was cool!
I spoke to my mum about some of the things in the book. It made me sad that Stanley was bullied by the kids at his school. I speak to my mum and dad about lots of things that worry me or bother me so I wanted to know why Stanley didn’t speak to his mum and dad too.
One of my favourite parts in the book was when Stanley conquered “The Wall” on his bike, a giant ramp in the skate park. I was so happy for him because all the cool kids could do it and when Stanley did it it made him feel brave and like he was cool too.
I would definitely recommend this book to other kids. I think it will make them laugh like it made me laugh and they’ll learn more about what being adopted means. They’ll also see that it’s not nice to bully people just because they’re different to them. I mean, who cares what colour hair someone has?
Reviewed by Kelly – Casper’s mum
*I purchased a kindle copy of this book from Amazon*
I wasn’t planning on reading WTRSCPSU?, I was going to leave it all up to Casper to read and review. But then he kept giving me little updates about what was happening and what he liked about it. I was intrigued after reading the blurb, even more so after his updates. Needless to say, it wasn’t long before I downloaded it (whilst waiting for Casper at his judo lesson) and began reading.
Stanley doesn’t feel like he belongs – he’s got ginger hair, he feels that he’s overweight and he’s not one of the cool kids who hang around at the park. Even his cousin avoids him at school. Add in the fact that he’s adopted, and he really doesn’t feel like he belongs.
For all that this book is one that’s aimed at children, I think a lot of adults could learn a thing or two about communicating with their children from reading it. It touches on sibling rivalry, feeling like you’re not good enough, wondering why you weren’t good enough for your birth mother to keep you, the love a parent has for a child, the problems that bullies themselves may be facing. The list goes on.
It’s actually pretty deep for a kids book and it’s one that I highly recommend for older kids, 9+, who’ll get more out of it, understanding-wise. Casper and I had a few discussions based on the contents of this book, ones that we maybe wouldn’t have had if it wasn’t for reading it. WTRSCPSU? was a delight to read. It was funny, touching, serious when it needed to be, and the author handled the subject matter perfectly. Thanks, Rob Stevens!