Home > Realism, Senior Fiction, Young Adult > Happy As Larry by Scot Gardner

Happy As Larry by Scot Gardner

Happy as Larry by Scot Gardner. Pub.Allen & Unwin, 2010.

This novel is for Young Adults and it is one of the most readable novels I have read in a long time.

Larry Rainbow was born in 1990 and the novel follows his life up until his 15th birthday in 2005 when there is a dramatic and stunning ending.

Not only does the novel follow Larry’s life it tracks the fortunes and progress of his mother and father, Denise and Mal, and also those of his friends, acquaintances and neighbours. It is with these people that Larry’s fate and fortunes lie, and boy they are a weird yet humanly, normal bunch.

Larry is a dream child, most adults would be happy wth Larry, he is intelligent, socially aware, respects his parents and friends but he is gullible. He found out that father Xmas was a myth when he was ten and this started a downfall from which he is never to recover.

In contrast to Larry is a neighbour called Clinton. He is the same age as Larry, is always around but is the representation of pure evil. They say that no-one is born evil, but Clinton is. It is Clinton that precipitates the stunning ending.

If you remember the 90’s and 0’s then Scot Gardner reminds you in the midst of the plot various events like the Twin Towers, the death of Diana and the Gulf War that touched peoples lives. He also looks at some of the trivia such as the year Ronald Reagan got Alzheimer’s disease. I thought he got it a lot earlier but there you go.

Larry’s parents are brilliant but vulnerable just like their son. This is a terrifiv novel which you will read very quickly. The short chapters help the reader keep the momentum going.

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