Review Blog

Sep 09 2010

Grimsdon by Deborah Abela

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Random House, 2010. ISBN: 978 1741663723
Highly recommended for ages 10 and up. Little remains of Grimsdon since the floods which had occurred three years earlier. Although some had died in the floods, most people had been 'rescued' and taken away from the town. Isabella, Griffin, Fly, Bea and Raffy, however, have remained behind and live in a 'palace', surrounded by water and threatened by the odd 'sneaker wave'. When the children meet Xavier and agree to take him in as part of their gang, the balance within the group changes and there is dissension between the two boys, Griffin and Xavier. Isabella continues to mediate and uses her abilities as a fighter to sort out some of the problems which occur. Griff's inventions allow them entry into another group, thanks to Xavier's invitation. When the children challenge the authority of the adults who are theoretically protecting them, things start to go wrong and the newcomer's presence is questioned.
Abela has moved beyond the series books with which she began her career and this is my favourite title to date. It contains adventure and excitement, as well as the children questioning the decisions made by those in power, more specifically, adults. There is an environmental component to the story as well as a focus on friendship, loyalty, trust, needs and wants and the morality of what is right or wrong following a disaster. It includes elements of other tales in which a group of children has been left to fend for themselves and Abela includes some mention of the rules which need to be in place in order for the different groups to function successfully. Highly recommended!
Jo Schenkel

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