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Book Reviews

The Watertower

Ominous and eerie are the apt adjectives critics have assigned to this acclaimed Australian picture book, now in a paperback version. Something inhabits the old water tower in fictional Preston. But is it an actual presence, or the conjuring of two overheated boys, Spike and Bubba, who visit its interior for a swim? Are there clues in the spare text (“The sun found him wherever he went, starting blisters on his skin”) and remarkable illustrations—more like panels for a film storyboard? There’s nothing expected in this exceptional tale that beckons readers to the story again and again to investigate. The Watertower will fuel the imagination in the most creepy, provocative way. Ages seven to fourteen.

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