Review Blog

Feb 19 2018

Indigo Blue by Jessica Watson

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Hachette, 2018. ISBN 9780734418135
(Age: 12+) Recommended. Themes: Adventure, Friendship, Relationships, Sailing. Jessica Watson's magical story Indigo Blue explores Year 12 student Alex's move to a new school, her life with her eccentric aunt, her love of sailing and her friendship with Sam a sailmaker's apprentice. This engaging novel draws from Watson's extensive sailing knowledge, having circumnavigated the world unassisted at sixteen. Her protagonist shows her inner strength and independence, Alex chooses to restore an old sailing boat rather than being drawn into activities by her classmates.
Life in the quiet lakeside town of Boreen Point proves challenging for Alex, with her father away working in the United States, she is sent to live with her artistic Aunt Robin. Alex begins her year as a fish out of water with many hurdles to overcome. Her personal journey, struggling with friendships, supporting herself, testing the boundaries and finding her own path is captivating. When Alex asks the local sailmaker for assistance, her eyes are opened to a new underwater world. This slow change in direction, with surprising twists, character revelations and acceptance of differences adds a mystical element to the narrative. Alex and her classmate Sophie's local history research, discovering hidden diary entries, trips to explore the old lighthouse and uncovering the secrets of the lighthouse keeper and his family provide Alex with directions for her present life. Past relationships and struggles are reflected in Alex's developing friendship with Sam.
Watson's teen novel Indigo Blue is more than a coming of age story, there are mystical components, emotive settings and relatable characters suited to a wider range of teenage readers.
Rhyllis Bignell

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