Notes from a liar and her dog ISBN: 9780747558484
Published by Bloomsbury, 2002
Antonia (Ant) and her family have moved thirteen times, and Ant is sick of it. She is the middle one in a family of three girls, and as she sees it, her parents love the other two best. There is certainly a huge amount of hostility, particularly from her mother, but this is understandable because of Ant's difficult behaviour and her constant lies. Her scruffy friend Harrison and her tiny half-Chihuahua dog Pistachio are her only friends. This is a loving, but dysfunctional, family, with a father who is often away and can't stick to one job. Something always goes wrong - never his fault - and the family is on the move once more. 'He doesn't want a daughter. He wants a fan,' Antonia says, and this seems more than a little true. Ant's lies come partly from her conviction that she is adopted and that her real parents will rescue her sooner or later. She also lies about her excellent school marks and to get medicine for Pistachio when he is ill. Lies make life easier, Ant believes, but a friendly teacher, who actually likes her, helps her to see where she is going wrong, and when she is finally able to really talk to her mother, a further planned move is cancelled. There are no easy answers here, but the family looks like coming to terms with itself. American setting.