The Endsister

Penni Russon

The Endsister
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The Endsister

Penni Russon

‘I know what an endsister is,’ says Sibbi again.
We are endsisters, Else thinks, Sibbi and I.
Bookends, oldest and youngest, with the three boys sandwiched in between.

Meet the Outhwaite children. There’s teenage Else, the violinist who abandons her violin. There’s nature-loving Clancy. There’s the inseparable twins, Oscar-and-Finn, Finn-and-Oscar. And then there is Sibbi, the baby of the family. They all live contentedly squabbling in a cottage surrounded by trees and possums…until a letter arrives to say they have inherited the old family home in London.

Outhwaite House is full of old shadows and new possibilities. The boys quickly find their feet in London, and Else is hoping to reinvent herself. But Sibbi is misbehaving, growing thinner and paler by the day, and she won’t stop talking about the mysterious endsister. Meanwhile Almost Annie and Hardly Alice, the resident ghosts, are tied to the house for reasons they have long forgotten, watching the world around them change, but never leaving.

The one thing they all agree on - the living and the dead - is never, ever to open the attic door…


Meet the Outhwaites, a rambunctious family of five children and their bohemian parents. The Outhwaites live a simple life in rural Victoria – Bunjil Country – and their nearest neighbour, just down the kangaroo track, is Aunty May Wilson, an elder of the Wurundjeri tribe. But life takes an unexpected turn for the Outhwaites when a great aunt passes away and the family become the beneficiaries of a vast inheritance that includes a fully furnished, four-storey mansion in London. With cautious, yet hopeful trepidation the family pack up their belongings and make the bold move to live in England.

Life in their new London home is strange. A sense of restless unease sets the mood of the house and puts the family on edge. Sibbi, the youngest in the family, talks openly about the ghosts she sees there and of the whispers she hears about the endsister. But not even the ghosts remember what binds them to the house or the significance of what or who the endsister relates to. The only tangible trace of memory in the home is a foreboding energy about the attic that cautions all to stay away. This mystery/ghost story is enthralling and just a little bit scary to impress fearless readers aged 10 and up.

Natalie Platten is the assistant manager and children’s book buyer at Readings Doncaster.

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