Shortlisted for the YA Book Prize 2016, this is a very curious tale indeed . . .
Out of the blue arrives an exotic young woman from a foreign land. Fearless and strong, 'Princess' Caraboo rises above the suspicions of the wealthy family who take her in.
But who is the real Caraboo?
In a world where it seems everyone is playing a role, could she be an ordinary girl with a tragic past? Is she a confidence trickster? Or is she the princess everyone wants her to be?
This the tale of the ultimate historical hustle, steeped in delectable romance. Whoever Caraboo turns out to be, she will steal your heart . . .
From the shocking opening to the very last page, this is the one book I really hated to put down until I was done. It's so textured . . . I also love that she's a black, or blackish, girl – so often YA does not contain them (or only as peripheral characters) – and she is such a fascinating protagonist. I also loved the skilful way Johnson turned us around on some characters. I could not ask for more in a YA novel, to be honest. I'd give it all the awards if I could
A rich and entertaining tale which raises questions and challenges assumptions
The book has a lot to say about who we are and the pretences we put on for other people, and also about the limited chances in life that a woman had . . . The historical period comes to life well in the book, although it also has a lot to say that is relevant today.
A well researched, finely written re-imagining of an actual historical figure, The Curious Tale of The Lady Caraboo sheds light on how identity is formed and shaped by the stories we tell about ourselves and the stories, like that of the ‘exotic other’, that are projected upon us . . . A great yarn with a beguiling central character