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Jamie, Tunbridge Wells Grammar School For Boys

The House with Chicken Legs

The House with The Chicken Legs is an enticing book written by Sophie Anderson. It is based on the Slavik Folklore about Baba Yaga however the idea and perspective of her completely changes in this book. In history, Baba Yaga is seen to be a deformed, ferocious looking woman that can "help or hinder your journey" but in this book she is seen to be "dancing among the dead" and "preparing food with love" and most importantly, a loving grandmother that went died to do her job. The story is based on a girl called Marinka who is granddaughter of Baba Yaga and her struggles of not wanting to become the next guardian.

The overall idea of the book was fascinating for me to read. Marinka was inline to become the next guardian after her grandmother but all she wants to do is live a normal life, have normal friends and be able to interact with the living. As we go throughout the book we find out that Marinka died with her parents when she was a baby but as her parents went through the gate into the afterlife but the baby Marinka refused to go through. Baba had to go into the afterlife to try and make Marinka stay there but she had no luck. Marinka kept going back to the gate and so Baba took the decision to try and teach Marinka how to become a guardian of the Dead.

Then Book often Switches in and out of different time-periods such as Marinka's Childhood and Her future which sometimes makes it a little bit confusing. The house that she lives in has 'chicken legs' and is always on the move. The house only stays in the same place for about two weeks and then in the night it runs off again. This ultimately leads to us knowing about Marinka's problem with not making Friends. The more she leaves the house and goes towards the living the house starts to break and crack in places which almost foreshadows the subsequent events that take place in the book.

I really enjoyed this book as it portrayed difficult life problems in such a simple way. I showed us about death, friendship, life and most importantly never take what you get for granted. I feel like Marinka's relationship with her Jackdaw, Jack, and her Lamb that she calls Benji, after her encounter with Benjamin, make the story come together as their friendship help Marinka through her life problems.

I feel this book was an 8/10 for me because it wouldn't be a book that I would naturally pick out but I was pleasantly surprised about how good it was when I had finished reading it. I would recommend this book to 13-15 year olds and I think it would be an entertaining read for both boys and girls. I am really glad that I read this book and it made me appreciate the friends that I have, and to love, remember and cherish my family.

Posted on: 12th April 2019 at 11:08 am

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