Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Boys’

Rocking Horse Road by Carl Nixon

December 20, 2019 Comments off

rockinghorseRocking Horse Road by Carl Nixon. Pub. Random House, 2007.

I missed this excellent novel about teenagers growing up in Christchurch New Zealand in the 1980’s.

It attracted my attention because I live on the coastal East side of Christchurch and I intimately know the Rocking Horse Road area of South New Brighton. It is a long beach finger, between the ocean and the estuary of the Avon and Heathcote rivers.

One morning in the hot summer of 1980 the body of 16 year old Lucy Asher is found at the high tide area of South Brighton beach. She had been sexually assaulted and murdered. She is found by Pete Marshall who is a year younger than Lucy and the consequences of Lucy’s death will affect him and his mates for the rest of their lives.

The police investigation into Lucy’s murder does not result in a culprit being caught so the boys(one of them narrates the story), conduct their own investigation until well into their 40’s. It dominates their lives, but will they solve the case?

At the same time the 1981 Springbok Rugby Tour of New Zealand takes place, a tour that divided the country and resulted in some appalling behaviour from both sides of the argument. The boys are caught up in this as well.

It is a loss of innocence story both for the teenage boys and the country. Neither will be the same again. The environment of the estuary and beach is a huge part of the appeal of this novel. If you live in New Brighton you will love it.

Powerfully written by Carl Nixon. Once you start you won’t put it down. For young adult and adult readers.

 

 

The Day the Plants Fought Back by Belinda O’Keefe, illus. Richard Holt

June 9, 2019 Comments off

plants foughtThe Day the Plants Fought Back by Belinda O’Keefe, illus. Richard Holt. Pub. Scholastic, 2019.

Patrick and Wayne are “two boisterous boys who made lots of noise”. Unfortunately they were also destructive especially with plants. Then the plants fight back and scare the living daylights out of the boys.

As a result their behaviour changes. See what happens.

Love the rhyming text which makes this picture book a good read-a-loud for juniors and the message is perfect. Sometimes people need a good hard scare to make them see sense. Fear is a good way to curb behaviour – a male teacher once told me fear was the key to an orderly classroom. Mind you that was 20 years ago.

Richard holt’s illustrations are perfect. the excitable boys, the fearsome plants with eyes and ears and the wistful mother. A good little package this.