Stella Street: And Everything that Happened

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In the tradition of the great detective novels, Henni keeps a journal of the events on Stella Street, recounted with a battalion of zany, 11-year-old truths and insights. When the Phonies move into 45 Stella Street, the neighborhood is in for a shake-up, explains Henni. Former occupant Auntie Lillie's open-door welcome becomes Mr. and Mrs. Phonies' magazine house of swanky new appliances. Keep Away! The Phonies, through their attorneys, launch an artillery of snottily outrageous letters at the freindly folks at ...

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Overview

In the tradition of the great detective novels, Henni keeps a journal of the events on Stella Street, recounted with a battalion of zany, 11-year-old truths and insights. When the Phonies move into 45 Stella Street, the neighborhood is in for a shake-up, explains Henni. Former occupant Auntie Lillie's open-door welcome becomes Mr. and Mrs. Phonies' magazine house of swanky new appliances. Keep Away! The Phonies, through their attorneys, launch an artillery of snottily outrageous letters at the freindly folks at 47 Stella Street, complaining about garbage, blocked driveways, and a magenta fence! Zev, Henni, Danielle and Frank feel as if the sun has stopped shining on Stella Street. When the kids are called in for questioning, they decide to do a little detective work of their own.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 5-8-This Australian import is narrated by 12-year-old Henni Octon. The residents of her street are a unique mix of people who have developed a strong sense of community. They are upset about the arrival of new neighbors who don't fit in with this eclectic, warm group. The newcomers turn the recently deceased Aunt Lillie's loving home into a stark, barren domicile; are nasty to the other residents; and seem to have mysterious business and social dealings. Soon, it also becomes clear that they are up to no good. After much spying and some consulting of the library shelves, Henni and her friends prove that the Phonies, as they are now called, are money launderers. The story has some regional vernacular, but it doesn't make the book any less delightful. The novel, written in the form of a journal, includes commentary on the action as it develops as well as black-and-white sketches. Capturing the impulsiveness of its preteen narrator, the story begins on the cover in her scrawling hand and continues onto the title page. The plot moves along smoothly and intensifies toward the end. Children will first be drawn to the book by its cover, and later admire the resourcefulness of this energetic group.-Lucy Rafael, The Center for Early Education, West Hollywood, CA
Kirkus Reviews
The young people of Stella Street rightly suspect that their nasty, secretive new neighbors are up to no good in this rollicking farce. Henni, her younger sister Danielle, her friend Zev, and 6-year-old neighbor Frank watch in awe as the couple they dub "The Phonies" throw money around like there's no tomorrow: They re-do their house in white (including the carpets); exchange their new Bentley for an even newer Mercedes; and, judging from their trash, travel all over the world. Henni narrates in a chatty, loose-jointed style, back-tracking, pausing to introduce her friends, interposing handwritten letters to God and the complaint notices from solicitors and government agencies that begin to arrive in volume at Frank's house. A little snooping and a library book about money-laundering put Henni and friends on the right track; when Zev breaks open a bowling ball stuffed with cash that the Phonies are trying to smuggle out of the country, the jig's up, but only after a wild airport chase scene. Unpracticed readers will sail through the short, dialogue-heavy chapters as this gaggle of young sleuths squares off against a truly odious pair of neighbors. (Fiction. 9-11)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781550375145
  • Publisher: Annick Press, Limited
  • Publication date: 3/1/1998
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 176
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 710L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.28 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Elizabeth Honey is an award-winning Australian writer and illustrator of poetry, picture books and novels for children.

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