NEVER ODD OR EVEN (part of Cold Fusion series)


by John Townsend

This is a great book for children in KS2 and lower KS3 who need a stimulating, intellectually challenging but accessible read. Eliot is 12 years old and obsessed with numbers and letters and the things that can be done with them such as palindromes and anagrams and mathematical puzzles - examples of which run throughout the story. In fact, one of the first things we learn about Eliot is that he is 12 years old and that the number 12 is one of his favourites in the whole universe because 'it's the first number with 1,2,3 and 4 as factors.'  Along with his obsession with numbers and letters, Eliot can also talk backwards - which he does frequently! Eliot sees the world in a very different way from many other people. Some people find his habits annoying and difficult to understand; but Eliot finds it difficult to communicate with and understand them too. He doesn't like or understand jokes and he often takes comments literally. Never Odd or Even is a brilliant exploration and celebration  of 'difference' - full of humour, insight and affection. It's also a great detective  story - when Eliot's school is burgled, it is down to Eliot and his extraordinary talents to solve the mystery - it's also a chance to get even with the school bully! However, all is not quite as it seems and there's a terrific twist to the tale. Content-wise, this is a fun, challenging and intriguing read. However, good-sized text, plenty of space on the page, and a glossary at the back make it very easy-on-the-eye and accessible to children who might be daunted by large chunks of text.

Formats available

Paper Back


Fiction | Boy appeal | Issues | suitable for SEN/reluctant readers but not specifically designed for them