No Number Nine is essentially a young woman’s search for meaning after loss, for self-acceptance after blame and for love after let down.
The book invites the reader right inside Pip Mitchell’s head to encounter plenty of humour stirred in with the grief of her sister’s death. Although poignantly sad in places, Pip’s resilience and wit shine through. The dialogue is wonderfully zappy and the characters fully fleshed out. My favourite was Billy with his cheeky charm.
I’m not a hockey player but was happy to be given a glimpse into the world of high-level hockey. Much of the story takes place away from the pitch – no prior hockey knowledge needed.
by Vikki McLean
As a 52 year old man born and raised in “New” England, there'd be no good reason for me to seek out a book like No Number Nine. But a copy was gifted to me and I gave it a try. Truth be told, I couldn’t put it down. The book literally brought me back to my childhood - a priceless gift in itself.
by Fred Macdonald
This book arrived just in time for my holiday and I barely spoke to my husband until I finished it. I thoroughly enjoyed getting lost in a great story line with engaging characters. I played hockey myself (although you don’t need to be a sports player or fan to read this as the story is about far more than that) and, although I could recognise some of the characters in my team mates, I wish I had met some as sexy as the German boys!! A really entertaining read that keeps you turning page after page.
by Lesley Dowdall
This isn't usually the type of book that I enjoy, but someone gave me a copy (an advance copy, in return for an honest review) and I have to say that I really enjoyed it. It had just the right amount of action and intrigue to balance out the love story.
I liked that it's set in Munich as I lived there for several years. In fact, if you've ever lived abroad, this is a great book to read - Pip, the main character, feels the differences in culture and language and, especially at the start of the book, there're lots of moments when you say "Ah! Yes! That's so true."
The start of the story, the first chapter or so, is slow-ish (but with a bit of a surprise in the middle of the night!); so that when, at the end of the second chapter, Pip discovers the true nature of the family she's living with, it's hilarious and shocking and after that I just got completely hooked.
My favourite part of the book is the ending, and I hope I'm not giving anything away when I say that, at the Sydney Olympics, the drama of the sport and the drama of Pip's life crash together and it's impossible to put the book down.
I suppose you could call this book 'chick-lit' - but with sport and humour, and a strand of darkness / danger running through the whole book, I can recommend it for anyone to read.
Fans of Chris Cleave’s ‘Gold’ will love this book, too.
This was a book I was sad to finish because I liked the main characters so much I knew I was going to miss them.
A fun trip back in time and across Munich and Sydney, following a young lady you completely empathise with and end up rooting for.
FJ please write the follow up so I can find out what happens to her next and reconnect wth her "crowd".
No Number Nine is a cracking good read, A well written, page turner that kept my interest from start to finish. Hockey is the back drop but not necessarily the star. The characters are recognisable from the hockey world but they are not the 'jolly hockey sticks' brigade we usually hear about in stories. Quite frankly I want to know 'What Nadine did next' as I think there is definitely room for a second novel by F.J. Campbell with this likeable character as the heroine.
Give this book a try, it is fun, quirky and reminds us of the excitement and opportunities that await the young as they set out on their own. A summer read with a hint of international glamour, a sporting back drop and Olympians on every page..what is not to love!
5 Summer Stars!
A really great read! I started this book on Sunday and finished it on Monday. Once I started, I couldn't put it down. It reminds me of a misspent youth. Twists and turns to the plot, compelling characters, interesting setting, all mixed together with a healthy dose of nostalgia for a misspent youth. If you are looking for a great read for the beach this year, I highly recommend it!
I highly recommend No Number Nine by FJ Campbell. The book kept me entertained and I found myself curious to see how it would it end and how the main character would transcend all her obstacles. This book is great for young adults interested in a romance, hockey and self discovery.
by Melissa Macdonald
FJ Campbell is the author of No Number Nine (2018) and The Islanders, inspired by Thomas Hardy's Far from the Madding Crowd (2019).
FJ was born by the seaside, moved around a lot, went to several different schools (long story) and has lived in England, France, Germany and Switzerland.
FJ loves reading: favourite authors include Caitlin Moran, Curtis Sittenfeld, E. Lockhart, Chris Cleave, Liane Moriarty, Colleen Hoover, Thomas Hardy, Margaret Atwood, Jane Austen, Tana French, Kate Atkinson. Favourite books include I Capture the Castle, The Count of Monte Cristo, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Middlesex, A Prayer for Owen Meany, The Rachel Papers, Birdsong, The Power, Barracuda.
S/he loves sport - doing it (a lot) and watching it (a bit) and has been to three Olympic Games.
FJ has been fired only once, from an au pair job.