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Let's Kill Uncle by Rohan O'Grady
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Let's Kill Uncle (1963)

by Rohan O'Grady

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1723297,650 (3.84)46
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One warm summer, a little boy and a little girl come to a remote Canadian island for their holidays. Initially things don’t look promising. The orphaned Barnaby Gaunt, who has spent his life shuttling from boarding school to boarding school, is a foul-mouthed little heathen; while Christie McNab, who lives with her single mother in the city, is sullen, prim and spoiled. The children hate each other on first sight, of course. But, as time passes, the peace of the island and the gentleness of the inhabitants soften their spirits. There are all sorts of wonderful adventures for two children to enjoy in this paradise. In fact, there’s only one tiny, teeny dark cloud on the horizon. Barnaby’s uncle is due on the island any day now. And Barnaby knows perfectly well that his uncle is planning to kill him.

For the rest of the review, please see my blog:
https://theidlewoman.net/2016/11/26/lets-kill-uncle-rohan-ogrady/ ( )
  TheIdleWoman | Nov 26, 2016 |
Two unruly kids are brought together on a small Canadian island. Through the guidance of a couple of wise adults, their competitive shenanigans slowly give way to cooperation and friendship.

Sounds idyllic and even a bit sappy, right? Well, no. A creepy uncle brings in an evil undertone; the kids grow up quite a bit, and assorted adult characters provide comic relief. It's an unusual and enjoyable book. ( )
  bohemima | May 12, 2016 |
"The children loved the little church; it was such a pleasant, peaceful spot in which to plan a murder."

In this delightfully dark little tale two 10 year olds, Barnaby and Christie, are spending their summer on a remote Canadian island. Unfortunately for them, none of the adults charged with their care are willing to believe that Barnaby's charming uncle wants him dead. They decide to take matters into their own hands when it becomes apparent they cannot depend of the adults, or the law, to keep them safe. It's good ole fashioned kill or be killed from then on.
What fun I had rooting for these two young children to murder one wicked wicked uncle! This is the kind a book that an adult like myself may enjoy, but a child would likely love. It had a truly Evil (yes, with a capital "e") villain and just the right amount of danger. Thank you Bloomsbury for bringing this book back into print! I hope a new generation of readers will have the pleasure of following the devious exploits of Barnaby Gaunt and Christie McNab.

I received a copy of this book via the Goodreads giveaway program. ( )
  diovival | Oct 14, 2013 |
Another very enjoyable read. I imagine that Lemony Snicket read this before deciding to embark on the Series of Unfortunate Events. I understand that there is a film version of this book- I believe I will have to find it. Recommended. ( )
  enemyanniemae | Apr 16, 2013 |
A mistake people may make with this book is assuming that with the two main characters being ten years old that the book is going to be *for* children. Well, it most certainly is not. Barnaby and Christie are the focal characters and the action surrounds them but it is the secondary adult characters whom the reader is given more insight into their personalities, their backgrounds, what makes them tick. This is a Gothic story, quite morbid, and everyone has a tragic story, but there is black humour to lighten the load and even though a Hollywood horror movie was filmed of the book, there is a certain tongue in cheek aura to the whole thing. This book is certainly not going to be for everyone but with my delight in the macabre I found it entirely enchanting. Evil Uncle is the villain, but all the "good guys" have their foibles or a certain something that makes them unlikable and yet I couldn't help but be charmed by them all. And I loved the ending; it was a big "Ha!" and I thought it was funny; though some readers may find it annoying. So not for everyone but I was very much taken with this macabre, quirky tale. ( )
  ElizaJane | Mar 14, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
With a compelling blend of ­mischief and menace, in which ­children on a remote island struggle to play by the rules of a morally inverted game, "Let's Kill Uncle" brings to mind a devilish Canadian version of "Lord of the Flies." The novel—written by ­Rohan O'Grady, the pen name of Vancouver writer June Skinner—was first ­published in 1963 and is now being ­republished, happily, by Bloomsbury.
 
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Book description
When recently-orphaned Barnaby Gaunt is sent to stay with his uncle on a beautiful remote island off the coast of Canada, he is all set to have the perfect summer holiday. Except for one small problem: his uncle is trying to kill him. Heir to a ten-million-dollar fortune, Barnaby tries to tell everyone and anyone that his uncle is after his inheritance, but no one will believe him. That is, until he tells the only other child on the island, Christie, who concludes that there is only one way to stop his demonic uncle: Barnaby will just have to kill him first. With the unexpected help of One-Ear, the aged cougar who has tormented the island for years, Christie and Barnaby hatch a fool-proof plan. Playful, dark and witty, "Let's Kill Uncle" is a surprising tale of two ordinary children who conspire to execute an extraordinary murder - and get away with it.
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When recently orphaned Barnaby Gaunt is sent to stay with his uncle on a beautiful remote island off the coast of Canada, he is all set to have the perfect summer holiday. Except there is one small problem: His uncle is trying to kill him. Heir to a ten-million-dollar fortune, Barnaby tries to tell everyone and anyone that his uncle is after his inheritance, but no one will believe him. That is, until he tells the only other child on the island, Chrissie, who concludes that there is only one way for Barnaby to stop his demonic uncle: He will just have to kill him first. With the unexpected help of One-Ear, the aged cougar who has tormented the island for years, Chrissie and Barnaby hatch a foolproof plan. Playful, dark, and witty, Let's Kill Uncle is a surprising tale of two ordinary children who conspire to execute an extraordinary murder-and get away with it.… (more)

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