According to Jennings
Why is Jennings wearing boxing gloves to conceal his paint-smeared hands? And why has Darbishire got flippers on in the dormitory?
As is so often the case with these two, there are more questions than answers to explain what they are up to. The fact that the swimming pool was out of bounds is only one answer.
Reviewed on 6th October 2010
The sixth Jennings novel depicts a summer term, presumably in Jennings' and Darbishire's second year in the perpetual Form Three at Linbury Court, although they seem to have moved dormitories.
As usual, confusion reigns supreme, from buying a leaving present to painting the swimming pool and attending a cricket match. This is one of the most believable of the series - even as an adult there is little here which is implausible, and the writing style of Buckeridge has grown to the point where the consequences are less and less predictable - or maybe my memories from reading as a child are just too faded to remember what happens.
Buckeridge seems to have become more confident in using a wider range of characters, with Bromwich, Pettigrew and Martin-Jones joining Venables, Temple and Attkinson in the supporting cast. This makes the school feel much more realistic.
My only quibble is that once again my copy is the version that has been updated by the author for the market of the early nineties, and personally I would have preferred the original. Overall, a good reread for an adult Nd a good book to read to a child, who I'd like to imagine would be in fits of laughter at the reader's attempts to replicate the spaceship sound effects as well as the characters do.