Yellowbird Education Book of the Month, June 2018

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The 1,000 Year Old Boy, by Ross Welford (author of Time Travelling with my Hamster and What Not to do if you Turn Invisible).


Alfie is a 13-year-old Viking boy who has the extraordinary ability to live forever... as a 13-year-old. He’s frozen at that age. Sounds good, on the face of it, but there are serious drawbacks to eternal life. However, once Alfred Monk, the Viking boy, has swallowed a magic pearl, there’s no going back OR forward. He lives with his mum until disaster strikes her and Alfie’s quiet, endless existence becomes more difficult for him. After all, it’s hard to avoid notice if your appearance never changes for years and years.


The clever part here is, that Alfie doesn’t want to stop living, but that he wants to start. In other words, he wants to grow up and go on to enjoy the rest of his life, something he has been unable to do. That makes a big difference and I must admit when I picked up the book, I did wonder how the author was going to get around the idea of Alfie not wanting to go on... for obvious reasons. The result is well-handled and poignant in parts. Moreover, the plot is engaging and intriguing, it’s a page-turner with some humour thrown in - so that should appeal to boys.


The cover notes offer some serious accolades for this book by famous people, most of which I agree with. I must admit to preferring Time Travelling with my Hamster. However, if your child has read that then this is the next best thing from Ross Welford.


Suitable for 10+ (no younger, in my opinion because of the themes and the length of 400 pages). Ideal for both boys and girls of 11+. We give this book a Yellowbird rating of 4 "Yellowbirds" out of 5!

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