"I WILL DO THIS FOR FREE - or my weight in chocolate orange." - Nosy Crow Skip to content
Posted by Tom, November 13, 2012

“I WILL DO THIS FOR FREE – or my weight in chocolate orange.”

My Best Friend and Other Enemies author Catherine Wilkins received a fantastic piece of fanmail from 10 year old Annie Lewis (photographed above) that we loved so much that we asked to reproduce it here. It’s absolutely wonderful to read letters like this: it means so much to us, and to our authors and illustrators, to hear how much someone has enjoyed one of our books – thank you, Annie! You can enlarge each page of the letter by clicking on it, or read a transcript below.

And here’s a transcript:
‘My best friend and other enemies’ was an amazing book, I enjoyed it far more than I thought I would. It was hilarious. I could not believe it, this was my life in words.

I was asked to review this book by Mrs DeWetStyn as a typical ten year-old girl. I am dyslexic myself and reading a whole book can be a challenge, as you can get bored struggling during it, but this is one of the few books I have read all the way through.

The way the book was printed was brilliant as it was not too close together or too small a print which made it clear to read. The cover was really fun and appealing and once you read the whole way through you really understood the cover and found it quite funny.

The story was amazing. You can picture the characters in your mind so easily and really feel for the characters and begin to see Jessica’s point of view. You almost feel for her in a way.

I only have one small point I found a little difficult in only a couple of places, which is probably only me. It was a little hard to see who was talking at times as there was so much dialogue. But, I really enjoyed the fact that Jessica talked to herself and it was like being in her mind.

Some of the words were a bit tricky to read but then again, I am dyslexic. It helps to come across new words and I did get them in the end.

The plot of the story was so creative. I think the book is pure genius. The family set up I loved, the mum was so dramatic I loved that and I can relate too. I also have two older sisters which are the same age difference between Jessica and Tammy. The poor father, it really is my Dad trying to dodge every argument with a cup of tea. I think my Dad would know how that poor chap feels.

Jessica’s little brother Ryan, well you can’t just not love Ryan. If I had a little brother I would probably want him.

The book is up to date with the economy and how grown ups are so dramatic about it and us kids pick up on it and get quite annoyed when we are trying to deal with our own personal issues – day to day friendships and negotiating school, whose allowed in what game. There is so much more to explore – entrance tests, clubs they want to get into, and sport – trying to get into the A team, running and netball. If you are not a sporty girl you are left awkwardly in the middle.

To sum up the book – every school library should have a copy, this is the best book I have ever read. I did not want it to end. I will die if you don’t write another book as I have to know how Jessica’s Magazine with Joshua goes on and how Jessica and Harriet Van Dirk are going to get on – my guess, its going to get ugly.

If this is ever made into a film – as acting is my forte – I beg you to consider me for the role of Jessica – I WILL DO THIS FOR FREE – or my weight in chocolate orange.

Annie Lewis

Aged 10 loving drama, thinks sport should be outlawed as well as mashed potato, and loves drawing cartoons as well as being a chocolate orange lover.

P.S. is this based on your life?


Thank you again, Annie, for your fantastic letter! If a film ever is made for My Best Friend and Other Enemies, I promise I’ll put in a good word to the casting agent for you!

You can buy My Best Friend and Other Enemies online here and read the first chapter for free below.

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