Elizabeth Varadan | The Children’s Book Review | March 24, 2016
Written by Michelle Cuevas
Age Range: 9 – 12 years
Hardcover: 176 pages
Publisher: Dial Books (September 8, 2015)
What to Expect: Comical situations, deep, philosophical insights, and a gentle, sweet story that probes the issue of what it means to be real.
For eight years, Jacques Papier has thought he is Fleur Papier’s twin brother. He sleeps in one of the bunk beds. Their mother sets a place at the table for him during meals. Their father buys an additional ticket for Jacques when they go to movies. But others—teachers, students, librarians, people on the street—ignore Jacques, which makes him think everyone hates him.
One day he eavesdrops on a conversation between Fleur’s parents – whom he has always thought of as “our parents”. To his jealous surprise, Jacques learns Fleur has an invisible companion and decides to make her jealous with an imaginary friend of his own. After a series of humorous incidents, he finds out that he is her invisible companion and that other invisible companions exist, imagined by other real children. Once Jacques recovers from his shock, he sets off on a quest to become free and real.
“I’m not talking about Go Fish or Trivial Pursuit, though I am brilliant at both. I’m talking about the imaginary friend game that Fleur was playing. I’m talking about my brilliant idea to get an imaginary friend of my own.”
Jacques’ voice is irresistible, and the author provides deft details for how the system of imaginary friends works, including the bureaucratic paper work that imaginaries have to fill out at the Office of Reassignment, before leaving their imaginer. One of the funniest elements is the support group, Imaginaries Anonymous, whose motto is, “I’m only as invisible as I feel, imaginary or not.” This charming, layered tale, funny and poignant by turns, can be enjoyed at many levels by young people and adults alike.
Confessions of an Imaginary Friend: A Memoir by Jacques Papier will appeal to young people who have ever felt unnoticeable and left out of things. It will also appeal to young people who like witty humor and to anyone of a philosophical bent.
Add this book to your collection: Confessions of an Imaginary Friend: A Memoir by Jacques Papier
About the Author
Michelle Cuevas graduated from Williams College and holds a master of fine arts degree in creative writing from the University of Virginia. She lives in Massachusetts. For more information, visit: MichelleCuevas.com
Read this exclusive article from Michelle Cuevas on Confessions of an Imaginary Friend: A Memoir by Jacques Papier »
Confessions of an Imaginary Friend: A Memoir by Jacques Papier, written by Michelle Cuevas, was reviewed by Elizabeth Varadan. Discover more books like Confessions of an Imaginary Friend: A Memoir by Jacques Papier by following along with our reviews and articles tagged with Humor and Middle Grade Books.
About the Contributor (Contributor Profile)Elizabeth Varadan writes for children and adults. Her middle-grade mystery, Imogene and the Case of the Missing Pearls (published June 15, 2015), is set in Victorian London and she is currently working on Book Two. Varadan loves to read and write about the Victorian Era and blogs about the many things she uncovers in her research. Visit: elizabethvaradansfourthwish.blogspot.com and victorianscribbles.blogspot.com
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