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Boy Underwater


Boy Underwater Reviews | Toppsta

Book Rating: 5 based on 5
5 Reviews
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A heart-breaking, heart-warming novel for everyone of 10 and older - this book will probably make you cry, and will definitely make you laugh. Cymbeline Igloo (yes, really!) has NEVER been swimming Not ever. Not once. But how hard can it be? He's Googled front crawl and he's found his dad's old pair of trunks. He's totally ready. What he's not ready for is the accident at the pool - or how it leads his mum to a sudden breakdown. Now, with the help of friends old and new, Cymbeline must solve the mystery of why his mum never took him near water - and it will turn his whole life upside down... `A wonderful story, moving and funny' - Ross Welford

Boy Underwater Reviews | Toppsta

  • ISBN: 9780008267018
  • Pub Date: 1st June 2018
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Imprint: HarperCollins
  • Format: Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 256

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First Line

Here's something you won't believe. I, Cymbeline Igloo have never been swimming.

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  • "A wonderful story, moving and funny." (Ross Welford)

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13th July '18
I read it to Callum2010 aged 7 aged 7
Boy Underwater 9780008267018
5 stars
The exploration of mental health and the accidents that can cause this, along with keeping secrets are shown to be able to pull a family apart make Boy Underwater an important reading for these issues as it approached them honestly and doesn’t trivialise them. These issues are explored and the sadness portrayed, whilst also including lots of humour. This makes the perfect balance! 
My son is nearly 8 and read this, I wouldn’t recommend any children younger than this read it, particularly not alone. It was great the way it opened up conversations about mental health for my son though. Ideal for Key Stage 2 children, or older. 
16th July '18
Cbow read it themselves aged 12 aged 12
Boy Underwater 9780008267018
5 stars
I really enjoyed this book and it was so exciting and I couldn't put it down!! I read it in 2 hours. It was exceptional and you really felt for the characters. Its about a young boy who has to deal with parent problems and embarrassing moments at school. It gave me a lot of confidence. There was some exaggerated text and words which made it fun to read as well as the detailed illustrations.
19th June '18
I read it myself (an adult)
Boy Underwater 9780008267018
5 stars
Grab your tissues (to muffle laughter and mop up tears) and get ready for one of the stand out reads this year…
It’s that time in Year 4 when Cymbeline’s class are due to start swimming lessons, which is great, or it would be if he’d ever been swimming before. But, his mum has never taken him, not to a swimming pool, not in the sea, not anywhere, ever. He’s googled front crawl, had a practice in the bath, and with his dad’s swimming shorts and goggles, he’s good to go. What could possibly go wrong?
An accident at the pool sparks a breakdown for his mum, and Cymbeline finds himself cast adrift from his normal life, searching for the truth about why his mum never took him near water. A truth that will change everything…
A wonderfully told, touching tale, I devoured Boy Underwater in one emotionally fraught sitting.
From laughter to tears and back again, Cymbeline’s cheeky, chatty voice shines through the bleakness of his story. His naivety at some of the adult behaviour and innocence at what happens around him remind us he’s just about to turn 9, in stark contrast to class mate Veronique, the overly-timetabled child-genius, who appears to be far older than her years. I loved watching their friendship grow throughout the story. While I wanted to reach into the story and hold Cymbeline close, there were times when I wanted to roar at the selfishness of some of the adults around him.
Benji Davies’ illustrations capture both the darkness and loneliness Cymbeline feels at times, as well as his fun, inquisitive nature, and add an extra layer of beauty to the stunning story.
Tackling mental health, family secrets and break-ups, this is tough subject matter for the young protagonist and you, the reader, as his confidant, so although Cymbeline is in Year 4, I would recommend it’s saved for Year 6 and above mature readers.
Great for fans of The Light Jar, Charlie & Me, The 1000 Year Old Boy, and The Mystery Of The Colour Thief.
12th July '18
I read it to Darth aged 9 aged 9
Boy Underwater 9780008267018
5 stars
An incredible and moving story. Cymbeline has never been swimming, in fact his mother is evasive about taking him swimming. When he gets to go with school, he's pushed in and his mother has a breakdown. It's such a very good read and my son and i were able to talk about mental health. The book has a lot of humour in it so it's not overly sad. It was difficult to put down. A very good read.
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