Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Have a Little Faith by Candy Harper! Review & Guest Post

Year Ten has just begun and I'm already in trouble. The way Miss Ramsbottom acts you'd think I'm always causing explosions or giving teachers' radical haircuts (whereas it was just that one time). And now she's separated me from my best friend, Megs, which means I have no one to give me a piggy back or check for dangly bogies. At least the school is trying to make amends by bussing in boys for our choir. So I can stare at Dreamy Finn until he realises I'm the girl for him… except he's singing a duet with my sworn enemy and her big head keeps blocking my view. Fortunately, I've got a plan to solve both problems; as long as I'm careful with the squeezy cheese and the underage driving everything should be just fine ...

Amazon UK Goodreads 

Paperback, 272 pages
Published August 1st 2013 by Simon and Schuster

My Review

Have a Little Faith is a laugh out loud barrel of giggles that will have you snorting inappropriately from start to finish!

Oh my gosh, Faith is quite simply one hell of a gal and I loved every awesome moment spent in her company. She is spunky, loud, quirky, speaks her mind and if I'm completely honest, reminds me a little of my teenage self!

This is so relevant to teens today and they will easily relate to Faith and her wonderful group of friends. The storyline is jam packed with teen drama, embarrassing families, pranks, shame face moments and best of all BOYS!!

We are taken through the story in diary form, which is a huge plus because we get to delve into the bonkers workings of Faith's mind.

Faith's friends are all very individual and it was very refreshing to see how different they all were, because usually we see teens all trying to fit in and be the same. Meg, Faith's BF is a wonderful partner in crime and the pair form a devilish duo not to be messed with.

Lots of people have said that this is perfect for Louise Rennison fans, and yes this has the same sort of styling, but I wasn't a fan of Rennison's books and I LOVED this!  I think this is a little bit more on the mature side.

Have a Little Faith is a hilarious read full of girly scandal and full on naughtiness! Faith is a truly memorable character that is very moreish! Candy Harper has mastered the art of what girls want and need to read! I loved the girls' journeys and I really can't wait for Faith's next feisty adventure!

4.5 / 5 Stars!

*Special thanks to Simon & Schuster for the review copy* 

About the Author

I grew up in a tiny house with a big family. I’m the fourth of five sisters, which means people sometimes ask me if my family are anything like the Bennetts from Pride and Prejudice. Unfortunately not, but it does mean that I still eat with my arm shielding my plate.

I’ve got a daughter (The Ginger Ninja) and a son (Goblin Baby) and a computer-genius husband. We live in a higgledy-piggledy house where I can never find anything. It usually turns up under a book. There are enough Children’s and YA books in my house to build a fort with. But I absolutely haven’t ever skived off work to do that.

When I run out of hilarious things that happened to me as a teenage that I can disguise as fiction, I take a break by writing dystopian thrillers as C.J. Harper. Nothing more relaxing than a totalitarian state where everyone is out to get you.


Guest Post

Tips for Writing Funny Stories 

Be funny 

Some people seem to believe that there is something better and more important about Being Serious vs. Being Funny. Nonsense. We need both. How would we get through conversations like Where Is This Relationship Going? Or, Do Rabbits Go To Heaven, Mummy? if we couldn’t ever have a laugh? I have known hilarious writers who have ignored their gift and struggled to write serious books instead, but laughing is vital to human beings. If you know how to be funny then don’t waste your talent.

Don’t be funny 

Having said all that, remember that not every line in your story should be a joke. You need to know when to take a break. People love to laugh, but they also love exciting stories that arouse a variety of emotions. Plus, be aware that sometimes humour detracts from the mood of a scene. I once cracked a joke at my sister’s goldfish’s funeral. She rugby tackled me to the floor and jammed her elbow into my throat. ‘It’s not funny,’ she hissed. ‘Well, obviously it is,’ I said (with remarkable suavity given that I was without full use of my windpipe) ‘because you laughed.’ She tightened her death grip. ‘I know and I am trying to cry.’ Personally, I’ve never regretted averting my sister’s building goldfish-grief based hysteria, but you might want to make sure that none of your jokes interfere with other feelings you’re trying to provoke in your reader.

Be funny in different ways 

At the start of every English lesson, my friend Lauren would ask, ‘What are we going to do today, Miss?’ Miss would always reply with a delightfully snarky remark (‘I was going to instil a life-long love of English Literature in you, but I’ve got hangover so we going to copy a poem from the board instead.’) Then, one day, Lauren asked the question, we waited for the response and . . . Miss threw a dictionary at Lauren’s head. Oh, it was funny. All the more so because it was not at all what we were expecting. It’s probably a good idea to focus on the type of humour that you’re best at, but consider bringing in other styles to stop your humour from getting predictable. (NB the dictionary incident happened in the olden days before I became a teacher; back then, teachers had the creative freedom to use violence in hilarious ways and no one told them they were ‘shockingly unprofessional’ or forbade them from going within fifty yards of a school.)

Be funny about people we care about 

Whenever I read a list of tips for writers, I hope that this one, this one, with its seven bullet points and its gif of a grumpy cat, is the list that will reveal the really very simple secret of writing a brilliant, bestselling book with speed and ease. But by the time I’ve skim-read my way to point three, there has already been much talk of plotting and well-rounded characters. Planning? Structure? Thinking up names for imaginary people? Yuck. I didn’t become a writer to work hard. I’m here for the free bookmarks, the way my job title makes being an alcoholic vaguely acceptable, and the glimmering possibility of one day meeting Neil Gaiman. But writing turns out to be just like the other things I’ve tried doing in order to avoid getting a real job (pyramid selling and having babies); you can’t just lie about on a heart-shaped bed eating bon-bons while waiting for someone else to put money in your bank account and deal with the pooey bits for you. In short, if you want to write something funny, you’re going to have to create some good characters. Lots of humour comes from personality; the more we understand your characters, the more potential you’ve got for making us laugh at them.

Watch other people be funny 

Despite what my Aunt Joyce said about TV watching leading to needing glasses and therefore robbing me of my already slim chances of finding a husband, I’ve always found it very useful. Not only can crime programmes help you work out how to dispose of a nagging old aunt’s body, you can also see every kind humour done brilliantly (and badly) on the old blindness-inducing box. Just remember you can’t ‘borrow’ jokes from TV because that would be stealing. Like that time someone copied my answers in the Maths exam and then I got excluded for violent and threatening behaviour, whereas I think you’ll find I was JUST defending my mathematical HONOUR, Mrs Stringfellow.

Don’t try too hard to be funny

Nobody likes reading forced jokes. For example I have been sat here for quite a while trying to think of a funny way to finish this bullet point. And now I need to pee.


  1. This sounds so good, Carly! I love funny books and have added this to my to-read list!

  2. I am always up for a book that will make me laugh out loud. We all need more humor in our lives. I am totally on the look out for this one!


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