Uprooted by Lynne Reid Banks



I'm really not sure what the point of this book was. There was no story.

I have not read any of the author's other works, such as the popular The Indian in the Cupboard, so I have nothing to compare this piece to. The premise of the book sounded very interesting. I don't believe it's looked at too frequently within the WWII genre. Instead of children and moms being sent out into the countryside of England, some made the trek across the Atlantic to having their world turned upside down. The author had this same experience, and the back blurb stated that the book is influenced on her experiences. Here is the problem. The book read more like a memoir than a story. Lynne Reid Banks should have wrote a memoir on her experiences. It would have been much more compelling.

This book is just a retelling of experiences she had. There is no conflict, problem, climax, or resolution. It's just a blurbs of experiences.

I also had some questions about the experiences she had. This was 1940/41 on the prairies in Canada. I am an American currently living on the Canadian prairies. I've lived in southeastern Manitoba for almost 10 years. We moved about eight months ago to Saskatchewan, living about an hour and half northeast of Saskatoon, where this "story" took place. There wasn't too much detail about the area. Yes, it's flat. She talked about a hotel in Saskatoon as well as the Saskatchewan river. She went north for a bit, and saw the wilderness. Again, they seemed to be scenes from her experiences rather than having a purpose to the story.

A few things stood out, also. The author wrote about the Canadian kids making fun of her for saying "mum." The Canadian kids said, "mom." Again, this is 1940 Canada. Even today, I hear "mum" and "mummy" more so than "mom." My husband states that he writes "mom," but it comes out "mum," but it's to be expected in 2016. American life seems to be more influential now than the UK. My mother-in-law was born in the late 40s and she has many English-isms. She clearly says, "mum," and "mummy." She also says "serviette" (napkin), "Chesterfield" (couch), and routinely says, "ta!" (Thank you.) So I imagine that in 1940 Canada, English influence over speech was still more prominent than it is today.

Also, Halloween was a big deal in Saskatoon. Was it? I know that Halloween has pockets of fans in North America even in the 1800s, but I don't believe it really took off until after the war, the late 40s/early 50s. I was very surprised to read this.

Canadians, weigh in. Tell me if I'm wrong!

This book needed a good editor, too. The house they were staying in went from a one-bathroom home to a two-bathroom home. Then grammatical tenses were all over the place. Usually I can overlook all of that if I have an engaging story. I couldn't overlook it in this case.

Ultimately, I was pretty disappointed in this book. I really would have found it more interesting if Lynne Reid Banks wrote a memoir about her experiences. Then she could have gone into depth and THAT would have been interesting.

Title: Uprooted
Author: Lynne Reid Banks
Publisher: HarperCollins UK
Year: 2014
ISBN: 9780007589432