Bullseye Bella

Author(s): James T. Guthrie

NZ Middle Fiction

Twelve-year-old Bella Kerr is a darts prodigy. And when she finds out that her little brother's special schooling is at risk because of lack of money, Bella secretly enters a darts competition at the local pub. The old boys network of darts players are not happy, none more than the gold-suited charmer, Frankie "Goldfinger" Phillips, a five-time national champion, who will do anything to stop Bella qualifying for nationals. Winner of the Tom Fitzgibbon Award.

Ruth's Review:

There are very few novels that feature girls in sports so Bullseye Bella about a 12-year-old darts prodigy absolutely hits the target.

Bella’s brother, who answers to the name of Blackbeard, goes to a special school, but Mum can’t afford the fees. The answer to their predicament comes when Bella and Blackbeard spot a notice advertising a darts competition at the local pub. If Bella can win, their money troubles will be over, right?

Except they need to stop Mum from finding out where they’re spending their evenings, they have to prevent the social worker from threatening to take Blackbeard away and and they must stop dastardly darts champion Frankie “Goldfinger” Phillips from sabotaging Bella’s chances.

Guthrie won the Tom Fitzgibbon Award for a previously unpublished author with Bullseye Bella and he has created a spirited heroine who has a lot to cope with - her parents’ split, caring for her brother and discrimination from the old-timer darts players. Then there’s her nerves before each tournament.

Containing lots of drama and hilarious moments, Guthrie has scored a bullseye in this debut. Highly recommended for ages 9 to 13 years.


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New Zealand filmmaker Scott Walker will be adapting Bullseye Bella for the big screen, shooting in NZ early next year.
‘I’ve always had a deep love of films and stories about everyday heroes,’ says Scott. ‘Normal people who strive against the odds to follow their hearts and attempt what others say is impossible.'

General Fields

  • : 9781775435730
  • : Scholastic New Zealand Limited
  • : Scholastic New Zealand
  • : February 2019
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : James T. Guthrie
  • : Paperback
  • : 823.3