No Fixed Address by Susin Nielsen | SLJ Review

Gr 5-8 –Felix Knutsson lived in four different homes before calling a van his home.

redstarNIELSEN, Susin. No Fixed Address. 288p. Random. Sept. 2018. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781524768348.

Gr 5-8 –Felix Knutsson lived in four different homes before calling a van his home. There is a logical reason for every single move—logical to his mother Astrid, at least. Also, he doesn’t like to be called homeless—he would rather use “between places”—but in his home city of Vancouver, vans do not qualify as homes to the mainstream population. Astrid manages to hide their situation from the authorities and even talks her way into securing Felix a spot at a competitive French Immersion program in a new school despite the lack of a fixed address. As the months go on and the weather changes, their situation becomes less and less bearable and leads Felix to a breaking point. The anguish that Felix faces as he strives to follow his mother’s demand that he hide their predicament is palpable, and readers will empathize with Felix’s situation. Prominent throughout this story is Felix’s love for trivia and his quest to land a spot on a new junior edition of a game show, which he believes will end his housing troubles. Readers will be cheering for Felix as he learns to finally let others help him. VERDICT A well-written work of realism that will be a mirror to some and a window for others. A first purchase.–Kate Olson, Bangor School District, WI

This review was published in the School Library Journal June 2018 issue.

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