Review Blog

Jan 03 2008

Cross-currents by Janeen Brian

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Lothian, 2007
(Age 11-14) On a camping trip with her stepfather, but lumbered with his son, an uncooperative moody boy whose head remains in a book, Julia's only wish is to get home to be with her heavily pregnant mother. When the car breaks down miles from anywhere on a dirt track to an old gold mining town, the trio takes shelter in an abandoned hut when it pours with rain. The roof caves in trapping Jeff's leg and the two teenagers find that they must rely on each other if they are all to be saved.

An exciting, breathless adventure story, the reader's heightened interest follows the two protagonists as they spat with each other, even when they are in danger. Their brief conversations, accentuated with short, spare insults, are instantly recognizable as the conversation of teens all over the world, when confronted with someone they do not like. This combined with the dramatic situation in which they all find themselves, makes for thrilling reading. Kids in middle school will certainly find much to like in this short novel.
Fran Knight

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