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What could an expression pea's knees mean in the following text?

Can you see how he is loved in this place? Can you hear how these fishy folk think that he is the pea's knees?

(David Almond)

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It looks like it should have been the bees’ knees.

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    It makes sense. The character in the book speaks "special English", he confuses letters in individual words so that he produces funny misspellings. Thank you for your explanation. – peter.slizik Jul 14 '13 at 16:06
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    Given the "fishy folk", I wonder if it's a deliberate play on the fact that mushy peas is a traditional accompaniment to fish and chips in Britain, particularly North England, where Almond is from and sets at least some of his works. – Jon Hanna Nov 25 '13 at 14:53

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