Ottoline Goes to School - Chris Riddell

Loved this one just as much, if not more, than the first installment in the Ottoline series - Ottoline and the Yellow Cat. As I mentioned in that review - these books have the magical ability to appeal to both reluctant readers (the copious illustrations make these books feel more like graphic novels than true chapter books), but they are also quirky and clever enough to appeal to higher level readers. In this installment Ottoline (and her faithful hairy Norwegian bog creature Mr. Munroe) are off to boarding school - The Alice B. Smith for the Differently Gifted. Ottoline spends her time making new friends, searching for her 'different gift' and solving a ghostly mystery. It appears that the Horse of the Hammersteins - a vengeful horse spirit - is wreaking havoc on the school and its pupils. The mystery is quite transparent, but I don't think that's the point anyway. The journey is so fun that the inevitable solution is just icing on the cake. Oh, and can I say how much I love the idea of writing out report cards for parents? Ha!