Saturday 26 May 2012

147. Drive By by Jim Carrington

Drive By by Jim Carrington
Published May 2012 Allen & Unwin

From the publisher:

Johnny and his friends have finished school for the summer. One sweltering day, on their way back from a water fight at the park, they spot an old lady who has wound them up by bursting their football. They make a bad decision.  An incredibly dramatic, pacy novel about getting in over your head, guilt and facing up to your decisions.
The question to consider when reading this book is... What is murder?

Johnny and his mates are teenage boys who are beginning to get bored during their summer holidays. Apart from an average part time job and football training there's not too much to do. When they a see an opportunity to seek revenge on their annoying elderly neighbor nicknamed the Poisoned Dwarf, they shoot her with a water pistol while she sits in a parked car. To Johnny's horror, they find that the seemingly innocent attack resulted in the old woman having a heart attack.

Johnny seems to be the only one of his friends who seems to be affected by what has happened, maybe that's because he thinks he is being haunted.  He wakes up every morning at 2.43am, the window he closed when he went to bed is open and he even gets a text message from the poisoned dwarf saying It was you.

The alternate chapters are told by Summer who is the granddaughter of the old lady, although Johnny is unaware of this fact.  Summer is also bored on her summer break.  Her friends are all away, her sister isn't coming home, so she starts to spend time with her Grandparents.  During the time she spends with her grandparents, she starts to ask questions about her Dad who died before she was born, and after the death of her grandmother she finds out more about her family history than she really wanted to know.

This is an interesting novel that will appeal to boys and girls alike.  There are themes of friendship, family, first love, as well as those of honesty and integrity.

Who will like this book: Boys and Girls age 15+
Read it if you like: 

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