When the Sky Falls by Phil Earle

When the Sky Falls by Phil Earle

Historical adventure with heart.

It’s 1940 and Joseph is sent to stay with Mrs F. who to his surprise runs a city zoo. When the bombs begin to fall it is up to Joseph to guard the cage of Adonis a huge silverback gorilla.

With the bombs falling will Joseph be ready to pull the trigger if Adonis’s cage is damaged?

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59 Reviews
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November 12, 2021 11:28 am

I enjoyed the writing style of this book and the ending is made better by how it defies the logic set by many other books.

School Name
KEGS Chelmsford
November 18, 2021 2:37 pm

An exciting book about love and heartbreak. It had many twists and turns and I was captivated from the start.

School Name
St Cedd's School
December 5, 2021 7:33 pm

Phil Earle truly went out of his way to create a masterpiece. I could not put this book down from the very first page till the end. Though there was a slow start, action soon arrived and so did chaos. If anyone is interested in war and animals, this is the book for you.

School Name
December 10, 2021 2:20 pm

This book is amazing I like how it expresses Joseph’s feelings about loss and his family. It’s a great book maybe the next book could be about Joseph getting adopted, making new friends and going to a nice school and the war ending. If you like war and animals and adventure this is the book for you.

School Name
St Cedd's School
December 16, 2021 12:38 pm

A piece written with heart, thought and imagination… The incredible masterpiece focused upon a young distraught boy during the pandemonium of a disastrous war. Have you ever wanted to adventure through the chaotic mind of a 12-year-old whilst he explores pathways into his heart, learning with trial and error who he really is? This is a book you must read, the tension, tragedy and action mixed into the pages of this incredible work of art can inspire many other writers reading this outstanding volume. 

School Name
King Edwards VI Grammar School (Chelmsford)
December 16, 2021 1:31 pm
Reply to  Shravanpragash

As I think back upon this book, I remember the tears that leapt from my eyes during The End… The End of Adonis; and surprisingly, very few books had made my cry, but the detail of this novel had bonded me with Adonis, and as a result, made me weep for this fallen beast. I hope there is a sequel to this book to continue Joseph’s life, giving a final ending to this book…

School Name
King Edwards VI Grammar School (Chelmsford)
January 5, 2022 2:24 pm

⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

This is a captivising book, it is written so well that I couldn’t put it down. Nothing changes the fact that the topic is devastating, but the way that the two bond is so surprising, given the circumstances. I enjoyed reading this book so much, and I think it is my favourite so far.

School Name
King Edward VI Grammar School (Chelmsford)
Mrs Fraser
January 7, 2022 3:24 pm

A tale of love and belonging and the power of kindness. A very different take on World War Two and the Blitz: the fate of the zoo animals.
The reader develops a real sense of the need for Joseph to find love and belonging. Deep respect to Mrs F and Syd too, who triumph over adversity.

School Name
Hockerill Anglo-European College
January 8, 2022 4:42 pm

When the sky falls was an…interesting book. 

  It had many secrets and mysteries that are left for a boy in a world which he has no one left who is willing to help him. When he moves in with Mrs F though his world is turned upside down with his new realisations. 

  Joseph is in need of quite a lot of help with many things, handling his anger, his reading and writing and his unsaid loneliness. At first he is hesitant toward the fact of opening up at all to his new found… alliances, but he slowly starts to realise that Syd and Mrs F are there for him and he begins to learn things about them as they grow closer over common likes and dislikes. Adonis the gorilla really touched my heart and the way that Phil Earle puts into words the actions and the sadness in his eyes and the amount of power in his shoulders…I can’t put into words what that made me feel, it’s sending shivers down my spine just thinking about it. I couldn’t put I down. I cried so much from the start to the end and I love how the author makes you really feel the amount of anger that Joseph is feeling, never have I understood a character more. Thank you so much Phil Earle for blessing me with you writing. 

  It is a completely new side of WWII and how the zoos were affected by it too and I have really been impacted by it. The ending scenes…I can’t. They were absolutely amazing. I still can’t believe that that much emotion and…everything can all be pushed into one chapter. I cried more in that chapter that I think I have cried in my whole life. I was left speechless.

  I recommend this of course to readers who love WWII stories and people who love animals as well. If you are a person who likes a book that is happy all the time and is perfect then this is sadly not for you, on the other hand maybe you need to experiment with other book styles and you should try this. There are some topics in this book that an average 5 year old shouldn’t read about but if you are a mature reader and you know you can handle those harder topics then please go ahead.

  I would give this book an 11 out of 10. Pure bliss!

School Name
Haberdashers Aske’s School for Girls
January 9, 2022 9:36 pm

I found this book a pleasure to read. It is enticing, heart-warming and engrossing.

When the Sky Falls is set in 1940. It is during the blitz and Joseph has been sent away from his family who he hates.

To start off with, I’ll talk about the main character- Joseph. To start off with, Joseph appears to be a cold hearted, angry child. He has reasonable points to be so bad tempered, but seeing as many children his age are in a similar situation, you begin to feel slightly reluctant to pity Joseph. As the story progresses, you see Joseph bond with Adonis (the Gorilla) and you see his attitude begin with hate, but finally, the love he feels for the gorilla, is so strong, he would choose to wait all night looking after him.
My second point is the fact that the author explores bullying. It isn’t the prominent subject of the book, but it is there. Halfway through the book, you discover that Joseph is dyslexic. He refuses to admit it because the other kids make fun of him for not being able to read or write. Eventually, the bullying becomes so extreme, that one child gets injured from attempting to hurt Joseph.
I think it is important that authors cover serious subjects like this in children books because it is necessary for people to understand the effects it has.

Overall, I think that When the Sky Falls is an amazing book, and I would recommend this to anyone looking for a World War 2 themed book.

School Name
Habs girls
January 18, 2022 5:25 pm

This book has an air of mystery and tension. It displays a boy who has been shunned by everyone he has known for his entire life and has failed academically because of a condition known all too well in our present day but unknown in his time. A woman on the brink, who is forced into accepting this boy at first, but soon grows fond of him. All the while bombs rage in the sky. 

School Name
Davenant Foundation School
January 26, 2022 2:15 pm

This book was very fascinating! It taught me things about World War 2 and taught me amazing vocabulary, metaphors and similes! I enjoyed this book a lot and my favourite character was Mrs F because she was harsh but sometimes nice and was friends with the main character’s grandma [who the main character hated]. The saddest part of the story is when Addonis’s back story was explained. Overall I think I would recommend this book to friends and family.

School Name
St Cedd's School
January 27, 2022 5:38 pm

I think your book was incredible I loved it it was fantastic it was heart warming and heart breaking it was very sad I loved the description it was amazing who wouldn’t like it was the best book I have read in ages it is filled with adventure it was to good for words WELL DONE!!!

School Name
Newhall school prep
Ms Adams (Librarian)
January 29, 2022 12:28 am

Well, I now know which book will be getting my vote…!

WTSF is a masterpiece. In starting the book on a long train journey up to Manchester, I purposefully avoided the blurb, and actually didn’t notice the figure of Adonis on the front cover! I listened to the audiobook and from the first line, I was immediately immersed in the wartime world of Joseph, Mrs F and Syd.
I loved the pace of the book, which scooped me up and carried me and my heart full pelt alongside Joseph on his journey of self-discovery. I loved how the author expertly places small reveals along the way, and his masterful descriptions of Adonis’s presence, movement and character. What I did not enjoy was how the author took my heart and smashed it into tiny pieces, leaving me a tearful wreck on my journey back down South
The difficulties that Joseph experiences in having dyslexia are described realistically but with compassion, It was wonderful to see this representation within the story. It was also easy to understand where Joseph’s anger came from and as a parent, I wanted to give both him and Syd a big hug. Despite Mrs F’s gruffness, I thought she was amazing. She reminded me a little of my northern nana. It made the book even more special to read about the true story that inspired the author to write it.
For me, WTSF’s is a modern classic and one all teachers should know about! An alternative to Goodnight Mr Tom? Ab-so-lutely! I would rate WTSF as a 5 star read and it was my best read of 2021!

School Name
New Hall School
February 2, 2022 8:35 pm

I had a lot of emotions reading this book. Joseph definitely should have thought about Mrs F’s life and how she felt when he insulted her. I don’t know why Joseph’s grandma shipped him over, but I mean, he does know how to get under people’s skin. Syd was very calm even after losing her parents, but Joseph? He goes around stealing from and insulting people. I feel so sorry for Adonis the gorila for losing Aphrodite and his son. I don’t want to spoil it, but Adonis shouldn’t have died. They shouldn’t have killed him. They were as bad as Hitler doing that. In my opinion this book is really good. I would recommend it to you. I would also recommend “The shark caller”. I’ve been reading it and it’s really good.

School Name
February 3, 2022 5:31 pm

At the beginning you could add a bit more action but apart from that I loved it ! Maybe you could write a sequel about Adonis ‘ s past ! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

School Name
New Hall prep school
February 6, 2022 11:51 am

This book was so, so emotional. Although this is said about books a lot, I honestly couldn’t put it down. When the Sky Falls put me under a spell that could only be broken by turning the last page, and resolving this wonderfully written story in my mind.
Most stories – especially those written for children – end with all problems solved, and everybody living happily ever after…except for this book. When the Sky Falls is different. It stands out. A perfectly written tale, with a not so perfect ending. As I mentioned before, this book is absolutely magical.

School Name
St.Cedd's School
February 9, 2022 7:17 pm

This is a wonderful book to read, the imagination and creativity Phil Earle as put into this is immense. At first I didn’t think I liked it because I’m not really into books about war but I tried it and is was amazing! I love Mrs F’s personality change half way through and how she has such a effect on Joseph’s life. Just goes to show, “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover.”
5 stars from me.

School Name
New Hall Prep School
February 16, 2022 2:48 pm

When I picked up the book, I thought I would not like it and that it was definitely not my style. Well, I was right about the book not being my style of reading, but that didn’t stop me from loving it and also crying towards the end. An amazingly written book Phil Earl.

School Name
KEGS Chelmsford
February 24, 2022 5:22 pm

Dear Phil,

I think your book was AMAZINGLY AWESOME. Although it was heartbreaking 💔 it was based on something that happened in 1945 (World War2). I like how it showed the love between the characters. If I could pick my favourite book it would be this!
Kind regards Beau👍🏼😀👍🏼

School Name
Newhall school
February 27, 2022 12:56 pm

Out of ALL the books that I’ve read, this is definitely, 100% my favourite! It was heartbreaking as well as heartwarming, making me feel all kinds of different emotions. Although, at the end of the day, my favourite character is Syd. I like how she’s very understanding towards Joseph, encouraging and calm even after what she’s been through and despite Joseph’s irate attitude, she proves him wrong. Mrs F was also pretty helpful and prompted Joseph to understand that he can get rid of his anger. My favourite part of the book was when Mrs F came to Mr Gryce’s daily tests and destroyed Clarence. After weeks, he figures that he loves Adonis but when the one thing that they both truly love is at risk of losing it’s life, they refuse to stand by and do nothing. At the end of the book, I wish that Syd actually showed up but still FANTASTIC book. Well done!⭐️

School Name
New Hall School
March 7, 2022 3:00 pm

This is my favourite book about World War 2 and is a great tale with just the right amount of funniness to suit the theme! I would like to see Joseph getting adopted in the next book (if it’s made). I may or may not have cried a bit whilst reading it, great balance though and loved reading it. A true masterpiece.

School Name
Wilbury Primary School
March 7, 2022 3:06 pm

I really enjoyed this book. It was sad how Joseph lost his parents also Joseph was my favourite character . I loved that the book had lot of emotion , I really felt the emotion as I read this amazing book . You have done an awesome job. Well Done. I rate it a 10/10. I also liked how it included zoo animals.

School Name
Wilbury primary school
March 7, 2022 3:14 pm

I loved this book so much, Joseph was such a brave boy when he stood up to Adonis it was amazing, but it was really sad how he lost both of his parents. If you love sad and emotional books you will definitely love this one. Phil Earle you did an amazing job! I rate this book a 8/10.

School Name
Wilbury Primary School
March 7, 2022 3:15 pm

When The Sky Falls is written with heart and imagination. Phil Earle has written an amazing book. I loved this book because it expresses Joseph’s feelings about him losing his family, about him losing Adonis and about the war. At the end of When The Sky Falls it really touched me because Joseph lost one of his only friends.

School Name
Wilbury primary school
March 7, 2022 3:16 pm

I loved this book because it expresses a boys feelings from having to move from countryside to a dangerous London in the middle of a disastrous war.

I think somebody who enjoys history would love this book.

School Name
Wilbury Primary school
Khadijah O
March 8, 2022 11:03 am

When the sky falls is an innovative book that is inspired by the author Phil Earle. It is a very moving story that was motivated from the World War 2, during the time when Hitler was in command. It was a time when streets were being bombed and families were destroyed, bringing the destruction of schools and houses and communities. 
 This book was written in the perspective of a boy named Joseph, easily enraged, having been sent away by his grandma. There, Joseph lives with Mrs F, a gruff woman with no fondness for children. The only things she treasured was the rundown zoo she owned and its mighty silverback gorilla, Adonis. As the weeks pass, time shortens between them and Adonis. Will they be able to save the life of the zoos pride and joy? 
This author has truly depicted the concept of the World War, and how it took the lives of so many people. This is a truly sensitive book that has turned into a heart-warming story. The colours of the book are used to convey a menacing atmosphere, during a dire situation when bombs take flight plummeting from a sky of red. Inferring to a sense of danger. Delivering a very dramatic image to the audience. 
I like the book as it tells you the perspective of people in Germany during 1935 and how they were impacted as well. It also displayed how the people of Germany viewed Hitler, showing that not everyone agreed with his ways, conveying a sense of vulnerability and oppression. This is shown many times when Mrs F uses Hitler to say how dominant he was over the war and people. 

School Name
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
Kelly O
March 8, 2022 11:04 am

When the Sky Falls is a book which is set during World War 2. It was set when the Nazi’s were bombing places like Yorkshire, England. All the children are being evacuated and Joesph has no choice but to stay with Mrs F. He meets Adonis, a Silverback ape, and throughout the book we learn about Joesph’s family and why he has such an aggressive character trait. 
In my opinion when reading the book, it was very intriguing because we see how Joesph, and Adonis start to bond. This was my favourite part of the book as it promotes how friendly animals are. We also see how Joseph slowly begins to open to Mrs F and Syd. Syd is a strong female lead in the book because she helps Joseph understand why Mrs F is so strict, she looks at all situations from both perspectives and in general is very clever. I think Syd being one of the main characters is smart. 
The author used an anecdote for the book, however changed it slightly. From what I have seen the author is trying to show us that Adonis and Joseph bear the same scars regardless of their similarities. 
The book was good however, one of the main flaws was that near the beginning of the book two kids bullied Joesph. I do not think as a reader or someone who has experienced bullying that it was appropriate for the book. No one really interfered with the bullying except for Syd and Mrs F.  
Personally speaking, the bullying was promoted a little bit as it was a continuation of it throughout the book. 
Overall, the book was of high quality and very engrossing. I believe the book should range from 11-13+. I do not believe young readers will understand the context of the book so it should be for people a little older than 10. 

School Name
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
Chloe H
March 8, 2022 11:05 am

When the Sky Falls is a heart- breaking book that tells the story of a young boy, Joseph, who is sent to London during World War II. A young, misunderstood boy who, used to live in the countryside with his grandmother. He is taken into the care of feisty Mrs F, an old friend of his grandmother who cares for a zoo (owned by her father and brother).  
In this zoo is a silverback gorilla who is distant from most people. Every time there’s an air raid Mrs F must stand and hold a rifle at Adonis, for fear of what he would do should he escape. 
This book goes deep into grief, dyslexia, anger, trust and friendship using descriptive vocabulary. It takes you through a roller coaster of emotions. 
I recommend this for ages 10 +, due to the context of the book. I believe that this book should have 5 stars, it’s gripping and goes deep into different, important issues. I love the language that Phil Earl uses in the book, I couldn’t put the book down. 
This book has made me think differently about how to approach these issues. 

School Name
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
Meg T
March 8, 2022 11:06 am

‘When the Sky Falls’ is a historical fiction novel based on a true story, that will grip you from the very first word.  I could not put the book down, partly due to the fact that it easily immersed me in a WW2 environment. I felt the setting was very clear and compelling. I also liked how many secrets there were, leaving me gripped and hungry for more even after finishing the book. 
Despite this, I think the book could improve by developing Mrs. F’s character further. There seemed to be a rapid transformation of personality. To me, this change felt rushed, and if more hints were shown to her true self, I feel the book would be made more realistic. However, the book had effective characterization for most of the other characters. 
Joseph is a boy who is angry with the world. He directs this anger to everyone, including the silverback gorilla Adonis. Mrs. F is a woman who hides her past behind her tough exterior. When they are forced together, Joseph thinks Mrs. F will leave him once she finds his secret, just like everybody else did. As the war progresses further and further, Joseph grows to love the zoo’s pride and glory, the gorilla Adonis, whom he once detested. But will he be able to say goodbye to him when the time comes? 
Joseph faces hardship throughout his entire life. Living in the city during war is unique to say the least. Bombings are frequent. Danger lurks around the corner. The sky is always falling.  
‘When the Sky Falls’ is an enthralling book full of secrets and mystery. I highly recommend it to those aged 12+. I would give When the Sky Falls 4 out of 5 stars. 

School Name
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
Eshaal S
March 8, 2022 11:07 am

‘When the Sky Falls’ is based in London in 1940. It follows the story of Joseph, a 12-year-old boy who was sent away during World War II whilst his father fought in the war. He is sent to live with a reserved woman, Miss F. He becomes Miss F’s responsibility, alongside her rundown zoo. This zoo is where Joseph will build an intriguing bond with Adonis, a silverback gorilla.  
The narrative arc constructed by Phil Earle, captivates his readers each step of the way. We are drawn in by the peculiarity of Adonis and Joseph’s relationship, and their heartwarming journey. The vivid World War II landscape heightens the drama and intensity of the plot as well. Adding to this, the way the author establishes Joseph’s relationships between different characters made the story more appealing. My personal favorite relationship after Joseph and Adonis would be, Joseph and Sid’s relationship. It was adorable reading the progression of Sid and Joseph’s friendship climax. Sid’s stubborn, talkative energy combated with Joseph’s temperamental, yet enclosed personality made for many funny scenes and outcomes that I enjoyed a lot. 
Phil Earle’s presentation of Joseph’s dyslexia and the struggles faced by him because of this brings attention to the intolerable injustice of discrimination, both systemic and personal, against people with learning disabilities. Some of Joseph’s experiences are very hurtful, so I would recommend that prospective readers consider the book’s triggers before continuing.  
Nonetheless, one hundred percent I would recommend this book to anybody, especially to those who enjoy reading historical fiction and animal stories. Readers who enjoy Michael Morpurgo’s novels, such as ‘War Horse,’ would likely enjoy ‘When the Sky Falls’ as well.  
[Spoilers until the end of this paragraph.] Phil Earle left no loose threads while constructing the plot, however, I felt that the story ended abruptly. Perhaps the novel would be more satisfying to read if we learned more about Joseph’s life after Adonis’ death. However, the suddenness of the story’s ending arguably reflects how terrible and unpredictable wartime London was.  
Overall, I rate this book 10/10. The story was extremely well put together and every character (even antagonists) was compelling. It is a beautifully written, heartfelt novel. 
Phil Earle is an author I will certainly revisit; the experience of reading ‘When the Sky Falls’ was unforgettable, and I am thankful to have taken part in the Juniper Book Awards this year.  

School Name
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
Elizabeth J
March 8, 2022 11:08 am

Based on a true story, and set in 1940, during World War 2. At its height, bombs were coming down every night, and now with his father has gone off to war, Joseph must leave the company of his grandmother and go into the somewhat loving arms of Mrs F. Upon my first meeting of Joseph, I assumed that he was a troublemaker, however as the chapter progressed my opinion changed. He further matured throughout the book, and that was evident in his behavior and the relationships he formed.  
Not only was this book an accurate portrayal of children during the war but was so beautifully written I was able to vividly sympathize with the character Joseph, and the anger he felt. When his emotions were at their peak, as well as when it eventually faded away to sadness. 
‘When the sky falls,’ focuses on the vulnerability of children and how they cannot express their own emotions, so they often mirror their care-giver’s ability to show emotions. So, when Mrs F lowered her guard, you could see Joseph finally opening up, and be able to express his emotions in other ways instead of anger. The detail of this book allows you to really feel connected and invested in the character, and how they mature over the course of the book.  
Overall, it is an amazing book that I think many would love. 

School Name
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
Hermione P
March 8, 2022 11:09 am

‘When the Sky Falls’ is an amazing portrayal of war.  It focuses on the main character, a 12-year-old boy named Joseph, who is trying to familiarise himself with his new surroundings, people and particularly his own emotions, 
The book detailed many struggles of the children in the war and how regular it was for the loss of a loved one to occur in such dire circumstances.  The book also features the relationship between a child and an animal and the comfort they can bring, especially in such harsh situations. 
The author, Phil Earle, also created very realistic characters, specifically Joseph, with his feelings.  By focusing on his anger, and how he tried to overcome it, not just the fear and sadness most of the children have felt. The character development was amazing when reading about the acceptance of those around him, and seems to mature throughout the book, and gains a new perspective for things. 
‘When the Sky Falls’, can be an eye opener for young readers to see how children before them, had to go through the harshest of situations, not just Joseph, but all the characters that surrounded him, whether that be a child or adult.  Giving Phil Earle’s audience a chance to reflect on how fortunate they are. 
As well as being a beautiful book, ‘When the Sky Falls’ is incredibly entertaining and gets you feeling so much as you are reading, by connecting to all the characters. When you are reading you end up sympathising for the characters, smiling at relationships strengthening, and crying when the characters are struck with another emotional obstacle.   
I personally loved it and was in tears when turning the last page. 

School Name
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
March 9, 2022 9:55 am

This book was overall amazing. Although it had a few minor flaws and what I think were unnecessary parts, it had outstanding description and the twists and turns took me by surprise, especially towards the ending. When you read between the lines, you can really see the relationship deepen even though characters appear to hate each other on the surface. I’m so glad i got to read this. I definitely recommend this!

School Name
St Clere's
March 10, 2022 3:15 pm

When the sky falls is a book about a boy who gets sent to London during WW2. He experiences life at a zoo with a woman who doesn’t like children. I personally didn’t like this book as I dislike reading books about wars. But if you do like reading about war, you will really enjoy this as it shows a child who is living in the center of attacks point of view. Out of 5 i rate this a 1

School Name
Hockerill Anglo European College
March 10, 2022 3:23 pm

I really enjoyed reading this book by Phil Earle. Its such a beautiful book and I felt so inspired when reading. Joseph, a boy abandoned by his mother with his father fighting in the war, and when hes in constant trouble he is forced to live with Mrs F. Mrs F owns a rundown zoo, and when the war hits the only thing worth saving is Adonis. A massive silverback gorilla. When it comes down to pointing the rifle will anyone pull the trigger?

School Name
Hockerill Anglo- European College
March 10, 2022 3:24 pm

I finally got round to finishing when the sky falls, and I have to say, it’s a masterpiece! An amazing WW2 novel about a boy call Joseph who is reversed evacuated to the city because he is too much of a haste in the countryside. It always wants makes you want to turn another page and continue reading.

The character development is showed really well, and it makes you think a lot about the war and who it effected outside of the battlefield. It really makes you think understand what they are going through. It is a very emotional book and takes you on a mental roller coaster. It really reminds me of another book called the machine gunners which is another WW2 novel by a different author. Id give it a 5/5 stars and a 6 if I could, overall, an amazing book. If you can please spear the time to pick it up, its well worth it!

School Name
Hockerill Anglo European College
March 10, 2022 3:24 pm

When the Sky Falls is an amazing tail with adventure and comedy where a young boy called Joseph is sent to the city to live with mrs f and her rather hairy companion adonis. This story is an absolute page turner that is hard to put down. I give this a five star review.

⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐.

School Name
Hockerill Anglo european college
March 10, 2022 3:25 pm

When the sky falls is a historical adventure book about an angry boy called Joseph who has been sent off to live in the city, as a punishment, in the time of WW2. Ever since his mum abandoned him and his dad went off to fight he has felt very lonely. He lives with Mrs F, a woman of dark secrets. When he discovers a run-down zoo with hungry wolves and a very angry silverback gorilla, his life changes. When Mrs F starts acting all out of sorts, Joseph must uncover secrets, that he isn’t ready for. Full of misunderstood characters, secrets and a zoo. If you like stories about war or animals this is the book for you.

School Name
Hockerill Anglo-European College
March 10, 2022 3:26 pm

When the Sky Falls by Phil Earle is set in World War 2. It is a story about a 12 year old boy who is sent to live in the city with a friend of his grandmother, Mrs F. They then work together to have a better attitude towards life. I would give this book a four out of five. I really enjoyed it but I think that it was a bit long-winded to get to the enjoyable parts but that might not be an issue for you. However, is is written very well, extremely relevant to the current times and I would definitely recommend to other young people.

School Name
Hockerill Anglo-European College
March 10, 2022 3:26 pm

When The Sky Falls is a historical adventure story where a young boy named Joseph, who is full of hatred, comes to the middle of London (during ww2) to be looked after by his grans friend, Mrs F. This story is both thrilling and powerful. I really enjoyed this book however it had a very slow start and I was tempted to put the book down and read something else. Apart from this When The Sky Falls is a brilliant read and if you like animals, war and adventure this book is for you.

School Name
Hockerill Anglo-European College
March 10, 2022 3:27 pm

Complex, dark, intense and mysterious, When the Sky Falls is an outstanding work of fiction. Unravelling the sad truth of WW2.
Phil Earle took us to some very dark places in the novel. But hope was always round the corner. Even when it doesn’t seem like it. Small snippets of daily life adds texture, “A milkman delivering milk to a house that no longer exists, kids playing in rubble.
The finale of the story will keep you on the edge of your seat. This is ultimately a story of finding love in the unlikeliest places.

Read it, and hold your loved ones close.

School Name
Hockerill Anglo-European College
March 10, 2022 3:28 pm

An amazing historical fiction, based on a real life experience. It is fast paced, once you get past the slow opening. It has a mixture of dramatic and funny scenes. The action is based in a ww2 zoo with a silverback gorilla as its pride. The last few chapters will keep you on the edge of your seat!

School Name
Hockerill Anglo European College
March 10, 2022 3:30 pm

This book is about a boy called Joseph who is sent to live with Mrs.F during WWII in Britain.Joseph finds his new school difficult, especially reading class. His teacher Miss Doherty is nice to him but Mr Gryce headteacher wants the school to be perfect and must succeed at this. And his way of doing so is the cane. Mrs.F owns a zoo and Joseph meets a gorilla,Adonis.
How far will their friendship go? Will Adonis survive the war?

My favourite line is: “Joseph there is something I have to tell you”

Wonderful story: 5/5

School Name
Hockerill anglo-european College
March 10, 2022 3:32 pm

I really enjoyed this book by Phil earl it kept me anting to reed more it has a very unpredictable ending I would give this a 5 star rating it is a historical adventure story with existing ending. I would recommend this to anyone looking for a page turner.

School Name
March 10, 2022 3:34 pm

When the Sky Falls is a heartwarming historical tale of friendship, anger, adventures, and ultimately, love. As the brilliant author Phil Earle surrounds you with an amazing story, backstories are revealed which pull at your heartstrings with ferocious force as a boy called Joseph, evacuated from the countryside to live with a grumpy woman called Mrs F who’s only care is a silverback ape named Adonis, deepens his bond with the ape. With an amazing ending, this book deserves to be among the best, 10 out of 10

School Name
Jasmeet J
March 10, 2022 7:39 pm

When the Sky Falls is about Joseph a 12- year -old boy who was hit with the consequences of World War II and shipped off to a strange city with nothing but a bag and a train ticket in his hand.
While reading the book, l could feel Joseph’s frustration and resentment towards his situation, as the author wrote this in such a way that l could feel the anger through the pages.
One of my favourite characters was Mrs F who kept a cold head most days as well as how she showed her affectionate side towards Joseph even if he didn’t notice it, was nice to see how he had someone in such an unimaginable time of his life
For me this book covers a lot of qualities l think a character should have, such as love and loyalty towards his family and friends, as well serious topics like bullying and resilience against harsh environment 

School Name
Harris Academy Chafford Hundred
March 10, 2022 8:00 pm

When the Sky Falls is an amazing book.I think the fact Joseph carries all the anger around in him and lets it off his shoulders in the end was a brilliant idea.This book gave me a clear image of the war and how people were feeling at the time which I think is an amazing achievement. The bond between the ape and the boy will always stay with me and you can tell when you read it because you can also feel it. The ending for me was something new because not a lot of books I read have similar ending so it was interesting: sad and happy at the same time 10/10

School Name
Wilbury primary school
March 11, 2022 12:55 pm

When the sky falls is an interesting book, ‘When the sky falls’ doesn’t really have a ring to it. It has nothing to do with the story line apart from the dropping bombs and also it took ages for it to make any sense or action. Personally I suggest not to read it.
Review by George from Hockerill year 7

School Name
hockrill Angelo European collage
March 11, 2022 1:02 pm

when the sky falls is a brilliant, cleverly laid out novel. I’d say its suitable for 10-15 year old’s, but that’s just my recommendation. Phil Earle really made me appreciate what I have in life and how lucky I am. its honestly kind of life changing as far as a book can go. from menacing Mr Gryce to mighty Adonis, not a single character let me down. a “historical adventure” indeed.

School Name
hockerill anglo european college
March 11, 2022 1:11 pm

I personally like the book a lot, although sometimes it got a little boring. What makes this story a lot more interesting is that it’s based on a true story. At some points it leaves you on a cliff hanger which makes you want to read more. Although some parts were interesting some parts kept repeating which made it very boring to read, but then another good part came and made up for the repeating parts. I would give this book 3 out of 5 stars . I would recommend it to people who like books about war.

School Name
Hockerill Anglo-European College