Title: No Fixed Address
Author: Susin Nielsen
Genre: Middle Grade
Publisher: Penguin Random House Canada
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Release Date: September 11, 2018
From beloved Governor General Literary Award–winning author Susin Nielsen comes a touching and funny middle-grade story about family, friendship and growing up when you’re one step away from homelessness.
Felix Knuttson, twelve, is an endearing kid with an incredible brain for trivia. His mom Astrid is loving but unreliable; she can’t hold onto a job, or a home. When they lose their apartment in Vancouver, they move into a camper van, just for August, till Astrid finds a job. September comes, they’re still in the van; Felix must keep “home” a secret and give a fake address in order to enroll in school. Luckily, he finds true friends. As the weeks pass and life becomes grim, he struggles not to let anyone know how precarious his situation is. When he gets to compete on a national quiz show, Felix is determined to win — the cash prize will bring them a home. Their luck is about to change! But what happens is not at all what Felix expected.
This is a great story, with tons of emotions.
Felix is homeless, though he tries to hide it. He and his mother live in a van. He tries to keep that a secret from his friends, but it keeps coming back to haunt him that he has no address. His biggest fear was that he would be taken from his mother, so he had to keep it a secret.
Felix has a modern, complicated family. His parents were never together. His “father” was his mom’s gay friend who was a sperm donor. His grandparents have passed away, and his mom’s brother died of an overdose when she was a teenager. This all makes for a unique situation for Felix. Though he has had many hardships in his young life, Felix works hard toward his goal of being on a trivia game show.
I liked his narration style. Felix did a great job of explaining things about his family in an entertaining way. For example, he listed the different kinds of lies his mother tells, and he made acronyms for different things.
This is a great middle grade story!
What to read next:
Quid Pro Quo
Have you read No Fixed Address? What did you think of it?