Review Blog

May 15 2020

The tell by Martin Chatterton

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Puffin, 2020. ISBN: 9781760895945. 280p.
(Age: 12+) Highly recommended. Crime. Rey Tanic (Raze) is coming of age as the youngest son of one of Sydney's most successful gangsters. He wants no part of it, preferring to break the law by creating 'urban art' with the MCT crew - McLafferty (Ides), Cooper (Candy) and Tanic (Raze). When his father escapes from maximum security prison aided by his brother Solo, he is thrust full tilt into the gangster lifestyle for the first time.
At first, the family business reminds Rey of a James Bond movie with helicopters and submarines. But a rival crime family, the Sullivans, deepen an existing feud with gunfire, arson and hitmen. Rey too must go underground and finds unlikely sanctuary right under the nose of Candy's father, Chief Superintendent Don Cooper. Dejan Tanic plans to retaliate but MCT intervene to save innocent bystanders. How can Raze avoid getting killed by criminals or the police? Raze has the support of his best friends, Candy and Ides to figure a way out of the mess.
Martin Chatterton, a UK author of dozens of childrens' books, relies heavily on the Sydney landscape with this new YA crime thriller. The plot and action scenes are so visceral, his characters execute a conclusion too spectacular to be simply inevitable. This is an author that keeps on giving, as he is also a prolific mainstream crime writer working under his nom de plume, Ed Chatterton.
Themes of family, organized crime, domestic violence and first love entwine in a familiar location, making the relationships and events hyper real. Don't wait to see the movie. Dig into The Tell to dodge the bad guys and their bullets along with Raze.
Deborah Robins

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