The Crooked Sixpence (The Uncommoners #1)
PUBLICATION AUGUST 2016
When Ivy Sparrow's grandmother Sylvie is rushed to hospital, Ivy and her annoying big brother Seb cannot imagine what lies in store for them. Returning to Sylvie's house, they find it has been ransacked by unknown intruders - then a mysterious feather scratches an ominous message onto the kitchen wall, and a very strange policeman is determined to apprehend them...with a toilet brush. Ivy and Seb make their escape - only to find themselves in a completely uncommon world. The forces of evil are closing in fast, and if Ivy and Seb are ever to see their parents again, they must get to the bottom of a family secret as shameful as it is incredible...before it's too late.
An uncommonly good and magical tale of Ivy's adventures in Lundinor, a spellbinding city underneath London where ordinary objects have amazing powers.
Short-listed for Sainsbury's Children's Book Awards: Fiction for Age 9+ 2016.
"A fast-paced and quirky magical tale ... Bell writes with great verve and imagination" -- Fiona Noble The Bookseller "A wonderfully intriguing mystery ... Uncommonly good!" -- Chris Bradford "The Crooked Sixpence moves at the speed of magic ... peeling away the mundane surface of the world to reveal something richer and deeper. Bell's world is part Tim Burton, part J.K. Rowling ... This is a terrific debut" -- Soman Chainani, author of THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD AND EVIL
Londoner Jennifer Bell began working in children's books as a specialist bookseller at Foyles, Charing Cross Road - one of the world's most famous bookstores. Here, she looked after the shop's five not-so-deadly piranha fish as well as recommending children's books to celebrities, royalty and even astronauts. After having the privilege of listening to children talk about their favourite books for many years, she started writing one of her own. Jennifer came up for the idea of The Crooked Sixpence while packing for a holiday and wishing she could just disappear inside her suitcase and be there already. The world of Lundinor is inspired by sayings from traditional English nursery rhymes as well as the stories Jennifer grew up with about the Cockney markets her grandparents used to visit.