Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Review: A Boy Called Hope by Lara Williamson

Publication date: March 1st 2014 
Publisher: Usbourne Publishing
Source: Library 

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Blurb- I'm Dan Hope and deep inside my head I keep a list of things I want to come true.

For example, I want my sister, Ninja Grace, to go to university at the North Pole and only come back once a year.

I want to help Sherlock Holmes solve his most daring mystery yet. And if it could be a zombie mystery, all the more exciting.

I want to be the first eleven-year-old to land on the moon.

I want my dog to stop eating the planets and throwing them up on the carpet.

And finally, the biggest dream of all, I want my dad to love me.

A Boy Called Hope is a brave, bold and funny debut about family in all its shapes and sizes.


I was immediately drawn to this book by its gorgeous cover, but it was the blurb and the recommendation by Cathy Cassidy on the front of the book that made me borrow it from my library. 

I really did not know what to expect from this book before reading it. I hadn't heard anything about this book online or read a review prior to going into this book. I went into this book blind, not even really reading the blurb, and I am so happy I did. I did not at all expect the brilliance of this book. 

I fell in love with the characters in this book immediately . The protagonist, Dan, provides such a refreshingly innocent take on the narration of this story. I found his honest narration voice somewhat similar to that of My Sister Lives On The Mantelpiece . Dan is stuck in this hard phase where he is just starting to lose some of his naivety and starting to realise sometimes adults don't always tell the truth and that sometimes people you thought you could trust, actually are not that trustworthy. Dan was such an amazing protagonist. I laughed, cried and smiled along with him over his journey in this novel. I really liked the interactions he had with his friends, which I felt added a little bit of relief in times of seriousness. 

Dan's relationship with his sister (INSERT NAME) was one of my favourite aspects of the novel. I am the oldest sibling in my family, and I really dislike the way in novels siblings are depicted as constantly fighting because that is not the way I am with my brother and sister. I liked this relationship as it was more realistic. I depicted the times where you fight but also the deep sense of responsibility you have as the oldest sibling for your younger bother. 

The plot of this book was very contemporary. It follows Dan's deep longing to be reunited with his dad after his parents split. Dan's innocent quest uncovers a lot more home truths than he knows and over the course of the plot the reader begins to question if this reunion is a good idea. This plot was really engrossing and contemporary. I feel many kids nowadays can relate to this. It really drew me into the story, I have to admit I cried twice while reading this book. 

The writing style of this novel was beautiful. Lara depicted a childs way of thinking and perceiving the world in such an honest and realistic way. Her creation of characters was great and I know that Dan, (MALE FRIEND) and his family are going to stay in my heart for such a long time. There were so many times I read a beautiful sentence and had to read it again before writing it down. The quotes in this book are so simplistically beautiful. 

Overall a beautiful novel that makes the reader question whether or not a child is capable of understanding whole truths rather than being kept in the dark. A story of hope, love, family and a very special boy called Dan. I can not recommend this novel enough, read it ! 


Five Stars 

1 comment:

  1. I've read so many amazing reviews of this book already and need to finally go out and buy a copy for myself. Can't resist any more!