Hot Best Seller

The Bed and Breakfast Star

Availability: Ready to download

Where do baby apes sleep? In apricots! I'm Elsa, and that's one of my jokes (I tell LOTS of jokes and I'm going to be a big star one day). I do my best to cheer my family up - but no one seems to laugh much any more. Not since we lost our lovely house and had to move into a bed and breakfast hotel . . .


Compare

Where do baby apes sleep? In apricots! I'm Elsa, and that's one of my jokes (I tell LOTS of jokes and I'm going to be a big star one day). I do my best to cheer my family up - but no one seems to laugh much any more. Not since we lost our lovely house and had to move into a bed and breakfast hotel . . .

30 review for The Bed and Breakfast Star

  1. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    I read and then re-read this book several times as a child; I loved the character of Elsa and her fondness for cheesy jokes (although at that age, they aren't cheesy - just hilarious!) As ever, Wilson writes of a difficult subject in this story, and unfortunately one that effects thousands and thousands of children every day. Homelessness is a very real issue, and as an adult it is intriguing to be able to look back at this story and see it through the eyes of a child. Staying in a bed and break I read and then re-read this book several times as a child; I loved the character of Elsa and her fondness for cheesy jokes (although at that age, they aren't cheesy - just hilarious!) As ever, Wilson writes of a difficult subject in this story, and unfortunately one that effects thousands and thousands of children every day. Homelessness is a very real issue, and as an adult it is intriguing to be able to look back at this story and see it through the eyes of a child. Staying in a bed and breakfast sounds amazingly fun when you're ten years old. As an adult, living in poverty? Not so much. I can vividly recall so many supporting characters from this book and several scenes I remember with fondness. This book doesn't feature the traditional happy ending of many other children's authors, but that is perhaps what makes Wilsons writing exceptional.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Sophie Crane

    This was an awesome book. You just have to read it, no matter what age you are. This lovely story has laughs, tears and amazingness all packed inside it! I would recommend this book to anyone, 1-100! You just gotta read it!!!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Bee (Heart Full of Books)

    August's pick for our Jacqueline Wilson book club! I'll post a link to our discussion when it's uploaded.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Sharmin Ahmed

    A book that I've read over and over again as a child, and now re-reading it as an adult! One of my all time favourite authors, whilst growing up, who has the gift of reaching out to millions of children! Jacqueline Wilson is able to conjure stories which every type of young person is able to relate to, either because of their families, love lives or social lives. This book is about a young girl, who is incredibly mature for someone who has to deal with half the things she faces. An incredibly re A book that I've read over and over again as a child, and now re-reading it as an adult! One of my all time favourite authors, whilst growing up, who has the gift of reaching out to millions of children! Jacqueline Wilson is able to conjure stories which every type of young person is able to relate to, either because of their families, love lives or social lives. This book is about a young girl, who is incredibly mature for someone who has to deal with half the things she faces. An incredibly realistic yet fictitious character, who unfortunately calls out to thousands of young children, in terms of their home lives. The Bed and Breakfast Star gives an insight into a child’s thoughts and feelings, not just about what she goes through at home, but also what she faces at school; being a ‘bed and breakfast kid’. Elsa, aged 10 is a young, witty character, who despite the difficult life she owns, always manages to keep a smile on her face. Never failing to lead a cheery life, Elsa is also forever trying to lighten the mood and atmosphere around her, by ‘cracking’ her jokes. However, her jokes are never appreciated in the way that she would prefer, and ends up causing more tension, often leading to physical abuse from her stepfather. Elsa uses her ambition of becoming a T.V star and a famous comedienne, as a means of escape from all the problems in her life. Elsa lives with her depressed mum, abusive stepfather, and two younger siblings who she is very often left to babysit, as her parents lack the capability and are forever drowning in their miseries. The family is constantly moving, causing Elsa to change schools several times, consequently falling very behind, academically. This book has allowed me to understand how some teachers make children like Elsa feel. Elsa states why she resorts to bunking off school, and how she is made to feel by her peers and most teachers at school. I've read how easily a young child can be demoralised, especially someone who has so much going on outside of school. I would place this book on the classroom bookshelf, allowing children to read it in class and at home. This book will allow the vast number of children who face similar issues, to realise that they’re not on their own, and although it’s a fictional book, Wilson does base it on realistic and familiar settings. I’d recommend this book for children aged 7-11, for independent reading.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Mariam Abood

    I remember this book and The Suitcase Kid, were the first gritty Jacqueline Wilson books I read. What I have always admired about Jacqueline Wilson is the fact she never romanticised anything in her writing, and I've always been in awe of her amazing, unique ability of being able to empathise so well with children. This book was harsh and realistic, but appropriate and entertaining for children. And to be frank, I think some modern children's writers could learn a real lesson from Wilson.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Siobhan

    Wilson is great at making realistic characters that you can quickly come to term with, giving realistic reactions to events. Her books are great at getting children to really think about actions and their consequences, really opening the eyes of children to the world. Some of her books are sensitive reads yet they are all great at sending life messages to children. I feel as though Wilson books are a must in the lives of young children, a way of opening their eyes to the re Wilson is great at making realistic characters that you can quickly come to term with, giving realistic reactions to events. Her books are great at getting children to really think about actions and their consequences, really opening the eyes of children to the world. Some of her books are sensitive reads yet they are all great at sending life messages to children. I feel as though Wilson books are a must in the lives of young children, a way of opening their eyes to the real world in the right way.

  7. 4 out of 5

    books with_chloe

    This book brought back so many happy memories for me. I still love the story even at 19 I will definitely be keeping this on my bookshelf. I love the character Elsa she is so cheeky, I feel I can relate to her a little with her having a step parent and the frustrations and conflicts that can sometimes bring. I would recommend this book to all ages 😊

  8. 4 out of 5

    Millie Hodgson

    I thought it was really good

  9. 4 out of 5

    Kate Callen

    Another classic Wilson, presenting a young girl with a combination of issues in her life, trying to get on, and to get on with her family in trying times.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ed Fincham

    I’ve read this book before, I’m a little ashamed to say - lifted it furtively from my younger sisters bookcase (because they weren’t really books for boys). The narrative in The Bed and Breakfast Star is driven in the first person by Elsa, with lots of I did’s and personal thoughts and feelings, this child’s eye narration feels like a very intimate and personal account of her life, nothing is left out for the readers sensitivities. Reading the book as an adult, Elsa’s accounts of her life are l I’ve read this book before, I’m a little ashamed to say - lifted it furtively from my younger sisters bookcase (because they weren’t really books for boys). The narrative in The Bed and Breakfast Star is driven in the first person by Elsa, with lots of I did’s and personal thoughts and feelings, this child’s eye narration feels like a very intimate and personal account of her life, nothing is left out for the readers sensitivities. Reading the book as an adult, Elsa’s accounts of her life are leant a very powerful pathos, and one cannot help but feel extremely troubled by her experiences - in particular the violence of step-father Mack, hostility from school-teachers, and neglect by social services. Wilson highlights this abuse beautifully and powerfully in child-like terms, my particular favorite being the use of Elsa’s nine different beds to describe her nomadic early years. However, it is an interesting that I don’t remember being bothered by the young girls experiences when reading it as a child, Elsa’s life appeared just as a canvas for the character of Elsa and her narration; and it is in that way I think Wilson intended Elsa’s troubles to be thought of. The book is not a cry for change, it is in a sense a cry for children to find their own voice. Wilson doesn’t afford Elsa a happy ending, she gives her positivity and a rest-bite, but not a solution . Through the illustrations in particular Wilson explores some of the mis-conceptions children may have about events, words, and language in an adult world. For instance in the representation of half-brothers and sisters, being literally a half brother. This appears as a device throughout the story to bond reader to character. This book is suitable for readings in upper KS2, and may act as an interesting point of discussion, and introduction to writing in the first person.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ana

    I always adore Jac Wilson's book. I love almost all of her books, but surprisingly, this book isn't one of them. Why I don't like this book? The characters aren't likeable. Elsa is too irritating (to me) with all the jokes. She only think about herself and her ambission to be a famous comedian. Actually I kind of amuse by her toughness since she never cried whenever her stepfather hit her. I also like her way taking care of her brother and sister when her parents are too weak to even get up from I always adore Jac Wilson's book. I love almost all of her books, but surprisingly, this book isn't one of them. Why I don't like this book? The characters aren't likeable. Elsa is too irritating (to me) with all the jokes. She only think about herself and her ambission to be a famous comedian. Actually I kind of amuse by her toughness since she never cried whenever her stepfather hit her. I also like her way taking care of her brother and sister when her parents are too weak to even get up from bed. But, she is annoying to me. And then her mother is even no good. I believe that she was facing a really hardtimes, that she endlessly move from one house to another, ups and downs, her husband can't find a permanent job, and finally they have to stay in a really lame bed and breakfast hotel with a really small room, dirty toilets, nasty kitchen, and a television room but the telly is broken. BUT, a mother will not let her children suffer from the condition too. She has to keep her family sane and their life keep going. Instead, she refuse to talk to anyone, she won't get up from bed, and she soaks her pillow with her tears for days. She grumble when she knew the condition of the public kitchen and refuse to cook (and bring her family to McDonald---eventhough she know the money condition). And guess who was the one keep the family normal? Yep, Elsa. I can't believe it. I know that was her down time, and maybe thats just too much to her to handle. And maybe she is actually a good mother in the good times. But, still. And the stepfather. A father (stepfather) who hit her child? Big NO.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Steffie Tamuyeye

    'The Bed and Breakfast Star' is not a typical child's book that focuses on bunnies and other imaginative adventures that you'd find in a typical child's book. If anything, Jacqueline WIlson tells a story of a girl called Elsa, whose life is spent relocating in different parts of the country due to her mum's boyfriend losing and finding jobs. She keeps herself occupied by telling herself and others, whoever gives her the time of day, some inventive jokes. However, she's constantly shut own and to 'The Bed and Breakfast Star' is not a typical child's book that focuses on bunnies and other imaginative adventures that you'd find in a typical child's book. If anything, Jacqueline WIlson tells a story of a girl called Elsa, whose life is spent relocating in different parts of the country due to her mum's boyfriend losing and finding jobs. She keeps herself occupied by telling herself and others, whoever gives her the time of day, some inventive jokes. However, she's constantly shut own and told to stop being herself. It's not until a fire happens at the bed & breakfast she's forced to stay in with her family that she's recognised and her presence is acknowledged - even by Mack, her mum's partner who has shown just how much happier he would be if she didn't exist. When she's forced to give an interview on how she helped save lives with a remarkably loud voice, she realises that jokes don't always need to be told in order for people to find you funny and you should always be yourself. In this book, Wilson not only highlights the different socio-economic issues that some children unfortunately face, such as temporary accommodation, a lack of love and affection at home and a need to belong, but that circumstances do not have to define who you are as an individual. Regardless of her circumstances, Elsa was very positive and energetic, relentless to get her jokes heard and fulfil her dreams of a comedienne and an entertainer. This book, I feel, would be better suited for 'higher ability' children who are able to recognise themes and understand dry humour as I feel they would be a lot engaged with the storyline.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Emily Dunne

    An excellent childhood read and one I will always remember. Through Jacqueline's creation of the vibrant Elsa and her family, a story of hope is told although at many times there is little to be found for the young 10 year old, her step brother Hank and her step sister Pippa. When Elsa's mother marries Mack (or "smack the Mack" as Elsa calls him due to his abusive tendencies) things go down hill fast when he loses his job. They are forced to live in a grubby run down Bed and Breakfast for which An excellent childhood read and one I will always remember. Through Jacqueline's creation of the vibrant Elsa and her family, a story of hope is told although at many times there is little to be found for the young 10 year old, her step brother Hank and her step sister Pippa. When Elsa's mother marries Mack (or "smack the Mack" as Elsa calls him due to his abusive tendencies) things go down hill fast when he loses his job. They are forced to live in a grubby run down Bed and Breakfast for which Elsa is called "The Bed and Breakfast Kid". Her dream is to become a comedian one day, and through all the tough times Elsa never loses hope. She is humorous and manages to turn every downside into a bright funny story which I think is an extremely important and excellent trait for children to have in life. With many families going through turbulent times in life and having to move around alot, Elsa has an excellent attitude to get through it, which I believe children nowadays could learn and benefit from. When a fire starts in the kitchen of the grubby run down bed and breakfast, Elsa manages to wake everyone up and they all exit safely.Things turn out very well for her and her family in the end when they are moved into an upper class hotel, each have there own bed, and they are very well looked after. This is an excellent story of stamina and hope for a young child, showing that things have a way of working themselves out in the end. I would see this book fit to be read by 10-13 year olds.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Keshia Smith

    The Bed and Breakfast Star follows the life of a young girl called Elsa and her family. The story is based upon the misfortune of Elsa and her family having to move from home to home throughout the duration of her childhood. Elsa’s father left her when she was young and her Mum met a new partner and went on to have two children, Pippa and Hank. Whilst Elsa adapts to having new siblings she finds developing a relationship with her stepdad (Mack) challenging nicknaming him ‘Mack the Smack’. The st The Bed and Breakfast Star follows the life of a young girl called Elsa and her family. The story is based upon the misfortune of Elsa and her family having to move from home to home throughout the duration of her childhood. Elsa’s father left her when she was young and her Mum met a new partner and went on to have two children, Pippa and Hank. Whilst Elsa adapts to having new siblings she finds developing a relationship with her stepdad (Mack) challenging nicknaming him ‘Mack the Smack’. The story develops to show of Elsa’s unique love of comedy and the illustrations throughout the book perfectly match the story and really allow a young readers imagination to come to life. Jacqueline Wilson captures the unique personality that children can possess and how this can cause them difficulties in growing up when dealing with adults and children alike, she offers solutions to this and Elsa ends up a true heroine within the book due to her unique personality. Not only does the story deal with the upset of having to move, but it touches upon a broken family unit and how this can often be challenging for a child to deal with. I found this book extremely enjoyable the lead character Elsa has a fantastic personality that is brought to life throughout the story and it really touches upon real issues that some children may face when growing up in a difficult family unit. This book is perfectly suited for independent reading for a strong reader in Key Stage Two.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Haya

    This book is another fantastic creation from Jacqueline Wilson. It has a great storyline with a great plot. The story is so simple yet so brilliant and this book will and has attracted many people. The Bed and Breakfast star is about a young girl named Elsa and her family. Her life was quite normal until her mother married Mack. Mack kept failing to keep his jobs to the point where Elsa and her family had to move to live with Mack's mother (which Elsa's mother did not like at all) so This book is another fantastic creation from Jacqueline Wilson. It has a great storyline with a great plot. The story is so simple yet so brilliant and this book will and has attracted many people. The Bed and Breakfast star is about a young girl named Elsa and her family. Her life was quite normal until her mother married Mack. Mack kept failing to keep his jobs to the point where Elsa and her family had to move to live with Mack's mother (which Elsa's mother did not like at all) so they moved to a bed and breakfast hotel as they didn't have enough money to keep the house. The bed and breakfast hotel is not what they expected and Elsa's mother was not satisfied at all. Elsa had always wanted to become a comedian and she has never stopped trying. Her family try to live their life and cope with what they have. A big change happens and things are taking a turn. I would 100 percent recommend this book. It has a great message and moral and tells you to never stop trying to achieve your dreams and never lose faith in yourself or dreams! If you are looking for a light hearted beautiful book to read with great morals, I would recommend this one! This book is suitable for all ages but aimed more towards the younger generation. Solid 4/5!!!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Annabel

    Dame Jacqueline Wilson (a very deserved title!) is, in my opinion, the best contemporary children's writer. She writes perfectly, in content, theme, style and accessibility for children from aged 6 to 13 (ish - of course this varies among children). She writes flawlessly for children, I could not find a single fault. She is never patronizing and introduces young people to important life issues such as love, poverty, friendship, adolescence, separated parents, illnesses and so much mor Dame Jacqueline Wilson (a very deserved title!) is, in my opinion, the best contemporary children's writer. She writes perfectly, in content, theme, style and accessibility for children from aged 6 to 13 (ish - of course this varies among children). She writes flawlessly for children, I could not find a single fault. She is never patronizing and introduces young people to important life issues such as love, poverty, friendship, adolescence, separated parents, illnesses and so much more, in a manner that is accessible and completely appropriate for young people. Children challenge themselves with their reading skills as the lexis and syntax are by no means 'easy' but are happy to do so as the plots and characters are so engaging. A fantastic writer, whom I am sure instilled my love of reading and fiction from a young age.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Emma

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I've never read a Jacqueline Wilson book but I'm vaguely familiar with the Tracy Beaker TV show so I was intrigued to see what all the fuss was about bearing in mind how popular her books are and how many there are as well. It's worth pointing out that I'm a 34 year old mum of 2 rather than the 9+ audience this is probably aimed at which may have shaped my opinions a lot. Elsa is sweet and funny as are her siblings and the book is well written for the age it's aimed at BUT..(and this is where th I've never read a Jacqueline Wilson book but I'm vaguely familiar with the Tracy Beaker TV show so I was intrigued to see what all the fuss was about bearing in mind how popular her books are and how many there are as well. It's worth pointing out that I'm a 34 year old mum of 2 rather than the 9+ audience this is probably aimed at which may have shaped my opinions a lot. Elsa is sweet and funny as are her siblings and the book is well written for the age it's aimed at BUT..(and this is where the mum side of me comes out to play) I kept thinking "Why on earth are social services?!" There'a a 10 year old looking after a 5 year old and a baby whilst her mum lays around depressed and her step dad is hitting her and then going down the pub! All the whilst this neglect is taking place the family are living in a pokey, dirty little bed and breakfast room all together! I get that it's about a plucky little girl overcoming modern day adversity and always seeing some good in any situation BUT at the same time it was just unbelievable for me. The only real mention of the social doing something is when the mum tells Elsa that if she doesn't go to school she'll be taken into care - the social are fine with them all sharing a room, the unemployed yet can afford to drink, violent stepdad and the fact she hasn't had her own bed for at least 6 months, a bug infested hotel but it's the missing the first day at a new school that warrants her being taken into care?! The book also ended a bit abruptly and open ended - there's a fire which destroys part of the bad hotel so everyone gets moved to a really fancy hotel temporarily and that's where it ends. A temporary happy ending that is supposed to make you forget that these children still don't really have an actual home. I think if I was a child I MIGHT have bought into the almost happy ending BUT the reality was too hard for me to ignore as an adult.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Eve beinguniquebooks

    Elsa, her mum, stepdad, baby brother and younger sister all wind up living in a hotel after her stepdad loses his job and the council cant get them into housing straight away. Though the hotel is cramped and not the best quality wise, Elsa makes friends with Naomi who also lives there and she also has her joke books which help her deal with the boys who hang around writing rude things on the walls! Elsa also gets her time in the spotlight eventually Elsa, her mum, stepdad, baby brother and younger sister all wind up living in a hotel after her stepdad loses his job and the council cant get them into housing straight away. Though the hotel is cramped and not the best quality wise, Elsa makes friends with Naomi who also lives there and she also has her joke books which help her deal with the boys who hang around writing rude things on the walls! Elsa also gets her time in the spotlight eventually of her own right in a positive way as she saves all their lives... Though a loud mouth and cheeky she loves her jokes and those joke books keep her going she is a lovely character and her antics were funny. The story shows how families can struggle and it's totally believable to end up at such a loss as to live in a hotel as times are getting harder job and money wise.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Anthony Andrews

    This book was a re-read, I had read this 2 or 3 times before, I'm not sure. I felt like I was dipping into a bit of a reading slump the other day, so picked up a Jacqueline Wilson book immediately and this was the one I picked. I don't know what it is, her books really refresh me and even though I don't like all of her books (as she has written over 100) I like most of them. This one was just great and her books are always about people that don't have everything going for them. < This book was a re-read, I had read this 2 or 3 times before, I'm not sure. I felt like I was dipping into a bit of a reading slump the other day, so picked up a Jacqueline Wilson book immediately and this was the one I picked. I don't know what it is, her books really refresh me and even though I don't like all of her books (as she has written over 100) I like most of them. This one was just great and her books are always about people that don't have everything going for them. The book follows Elsa, who lives with her mum, her stepfather Mack and her two half siblings in a hotel. They lost their home and were forced to move into The Royal Hotel, was isn't as grand as it sounds. She also doesn't like Mack and he doesn't seem to like her very much. Definitely not one of my absolute favorites from Jacqueline Wilson, but it was still amazing. 4 Stars.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Meg

    We follow the story of Elsa who has lived in over 7 different places. Her family are poor, they can’t afford to live in a big house surrounded by lots of luxuries but instead are resorted to living in a ‘bed and breakfast hotel’. With mould growing on the walls, not being supplied a proper breakfast and living on the top floor with a lift that doesn’t work, Elsa tries to find happiness in the darkest of moments. I read this book when I was a child and I found it hilarious (especially We follow the story of Elsa who has lived in over 7 different places. Her family are poor, they can’t afford to live in a big house surrounded by lots of luxuries but instead are resorted to living in a ‘bed and breakfast hotel’. With mould growing on the walls, not being supplied a proper breakfast and living on the top floor with a lift that doesn’t work, Elsa tries to find happiness in the darkest of moments. I read this book when I was a child and I found it hilarious (especially Elsa’s jokes). However, reading it again now as an adult I truly understand Jaqueline Wilson’s writing and understand the darker meaning behind the story. Elsa’s step dad is abusive to only her. Her mum is severely depressed and doesn’t believe there is a light at the end of the tunnel. The council dump them into the smallest room, a room in which they can’t possibly breathe. There are scenes which involve the local kids writing ‘naughty words’ on the walls. I was completely oblivious to this when I was reading it as a child 😂 Jaqueline Wilson hits these truths beautifully. Elsa is one of the happiest kids I’ve had the joys of reading about. She teaches you that even in the darkest of moments, there is always something to look forward too and smile about. Beautiful, heartwarming and precious read 💜

  21. 4 out of 5

    Shahrun

    Love how Jacqueline Wilson takes ordinary every day people in terrible situations and sprinkles them with her unique magic. What we have here is an amazing 10 year old girl who wants to brighten up every bodies lives with her random humour. Sadly her timing is usually slightly off and the jokers are often terrible. Or is just the situations? Still, they manage to come out the other side ok and the jokes become amazing. Love the zany illustrations! Why cant all books have them?!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Maddie

    I've been meaning to read this book since I first began reading Jacqueline Wilson as a kid over fifteen years ago. I was so happy to finally get hold of it! I was not disappointed. I love the characters, the real-to-life working class situations and circumstances. I don't think I will ever stop loving Jacqueline Wilson's writing.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Carlee Loveday

    Read as a child, a teen and a adult. These books are my comfort blanket and I will always come back to them. Couldn’t recommend highly enough xxx

  24. 5 out of 5

    Tiffany

    so far the bed and breakfast star is going really well I love a good Jacqueline Wilson book

  25. 4 out of 5

    NoRa

    I really enjoyed this! The door and cookie joke were my fav!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Naomi Mogaba

    it was really interesting

  27. 4 out of 5

    Cloverhand Reader

    It was a good book for what it is. Felt repetitive at times and the constant threats from her stepdad were off putting

  28. 5 out of 5

    Pratistha Das

    This is a funny and heart warming children's story about a girl who knows how to make lemonade out of the lemons that life throws at her!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Elsie

    Read this to relive my childhood and I wasn't disappointed! I just hope kids these days will have the experiences I did with all of Jacqueline Wilson's books!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    Great read, with issues related to people who are struggling in life due to money problems and family life. Read it in an hour :)

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.