Review Blog

Mar 05 2013

Bad grammar by Nathan Luff

cover image

Walker, 2013. ISBN 9781921977862.
For upper primary to lower secondary readers. Recommended action packed adventure/mystery.
Imagine school, no, imagine a bad school, no wait, imagine the worst school in the world! Now picture yourself being sent there by your well-meaning but slightly misguided parents. You're not a bad student; you're a warrior, a legend! Somebody do something!
Worried about their son's obsession with computer games and lack of three dimensional friends, Marcus' parents have resorted to sending him to Bourkely Boys Grammar, an isolated boarding school for troubled boys. Marcus arrives in the dinghy, isolated, prison-like school with his life on a memory stick and plans for immediate escape. Things, however, prove to be a little more complicated. When the bullies fix their beady eyes on Marcus and his stick of computer game memories, he knows he is in for a tumultuous time. But Marcus is a warrior with skills like stealth, deception and infiltration and no matter what, he is getting outta there or will die trying.
Luff has created a feisty, funny character doing his best to survive in the dog-eat-dog world of the school playground. His portrayal of Marcus, a clever, proactive, self-proclaimed warrior will appeal to young male readers who will be pleasantly surprised by the depth of this character. The protagonist learns about friendship and trust while coming face to face with a school ghost, a principal who may or may not be woman, a wacky teacher and some very nasty bullies. Young readers will enjoy this adventurous romp that has enough humour, twists and mystery to keep the plot moving at a blistering pace.
Fiona Bell

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