Summer holiday quiz from the Guardian

Summer is here with a vengeance in Rhode Island, and, coincidentally, yesterday The Guardian ran a quiz on the best summer holidays in books.

Here's the one I missed--I'd never heard of the book before:

7. Why are the children in Ian McEwan’s The Cement Garden left unsupervised over the course of one long, hot summer?
They run away
Their mother dies
They kill their parents
They are shipwrecked on a desert island where they find buried treasure

I have just looked it up on Wikipedia (edited to add: and was very taken aback by the adult content in the description. Not jolly school children on holiday). I do not think I shall be seeking it out any time soon. However, fans of Flowers in the Attic might be interested...

On a more wholesome note, my favorite summer holiday book is Return to Gone Away, by Elizabeth Enright.


  1. DO NOT EVER read that book, if you can help it. Can you believe that was a required text for a class I took in grad school??? It was beyond ick.

  2. Can I just say ... GROSS! Definitely not my kind of book. (That's probably why I was one of the few kids I knew in high school who didn't read V.C. Andrews.)

  3. Truly gross. I am sorry you had to sully your young mind with it, Tanita.

  4. Not going to read that book, Charlotte. But I'm with you 100% percent on Return to Gone Away (I like it better than the first book, because I LOVE the house). Must re-read...


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