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Craig Silvey’s JASPER JONES

This wonderful novel is set in a remote West Australian town in 1965. The narrator of the story is Charlie Bucktin, a bookish 13-year-old who is dragged (voluntarily) from his bed one night by his friend (and town outcast) Jasper Jones. Jasper has found something disturbing in the bush and the secret they try to keep will cause their small country town to implode. This will remind you of reading TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD for the first time and the realization of how powerful a book can be.

Craig Silvey has written a book that is funning, moving and has something important to say about Australian society but it is also much more than that. The book is full of unforgettable characters none more so than Jeffrey who threatens to steal every scene he is in. I defy anyone when reading about the, town cricket match not to sit on the edge of their chair and cheer and groan like you are actually in the crowd watching the game. This is also a book you can easily give to a young adult. In fact it will be published as YA Fiction in the US next year by the same publisher as THE BOOK THIEF.

There are some great novels on this year’s Miles Franklin shortlist but my fingers are tightly crossed hoping that JASPER JONES will win!

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