Synopses & Reviews
A love story and a thriller in one, from Kevin Brooks, the groundbreaking author of Martyn Pig. Now in a dynamic new Kevin Brooks repackaging!
Caitlin is spending the summer on the windswept island that is her home. She is caught between girlhood and maturity, and feels utterly isolated from the rest of the world. Then she meets Lucas, who is the embodiment of freedom and honesty. She is instantly drawn to him. But Caitlin must also grapple with the darker forces that seem to be confronting her family. Lucas himself further complicates matters when he is hunted for an awful crime that Caitlin herself becomes involved in.
n this British InIPOrt, fifteen-year-old Cait finds her peaceful life with her father disrupted when her restless older brother, Dr,,inic, conies back from university for the summer. Donlillic is drawn to the troublemaking element in their small island community, rich Jamic Tair and his hangers-on. not knowing that jarnic has made it clear he has designs on Cait despite her obvious Tjection of him. Into this tense situation comes Lucas, a boy unlike anyone Cait's ever known; Eying rough on the coast, he's despised as a gypsy by the bigoted locals, but Cait is drawn to his unusual serenity and his perceptiveness. His strangeness makes him an easy target, however, for jamic Tait's cunning hate campaign that threatens Lucas'free- dom and, when mob frenzy has been incited, his life. There are some appealing elements here-the magnetic, possibly supernatural outsider, the changes in Cair's relationship with her nerve older brother, the shady power structures of the insidar comniunity-and Brooks is particularly good at using the physical reality of the semi-isolated island and its natural features to enhance the mood of his story. Unfortunately, this lacks the tautness that marked his previous book, Ma" pig (BCCB 9102), with Cait's lengthy self-examinations and explanations diffusing the tension rather than enhancing it. The heavy hand of contrivance is too evident in the events and in the characters, both the good guys (Lucas seems horn for martyrdom) and the antagonists (their villainy is too pat to he interesting). The mixture of mob sway and supernatural elements is employed more
effectively in Westall's Ymxlty@ Cat (BCCB 3192), but this will definitely have allure for readers partial to tales of romantic and misunderstood strangers. DS
School Library Journal
(May 1, 2003; 0-439-45698-3)
Gr 9 Up-This beautifully written allegorical tale by the author of Martyn Pig (Scholastic, 2002) stays with readers long after it ends. Set on an isolated island off Great Britain, the novel has it all-love, hate, sin, forgiveness and redemption, and a memorable title character. As Caitlin, 15, relates the events of the previous summer, she recalls with crystal clarity the moment when the mysterious boy appeared out of nowhere. His arrival precipitates a series of incidents that exposes the ugly underbelly of the seemingly idyllic setting. Lucas, 16, is enigmatic and direct, and has the uncanny ability to read people and predict their actions. He lives off the land, and doesn't seem to want or need anyone. The locals don't understand him, and they see him as a threat. Lucas rescues Caitlin from being raped by Jamie, a seemingly upstanding college guy who, with his gang of rowdy, beer-drinking buddies, spreads rumors and innuendoes about the stranger. The situation rapidly escalates into an accusation of attempted murder after one of the island girls is brutally attacked. A group of residents abandons rational thought and becomes a senseless mob, seeking vigilante justice. The writing is extraordinarily lyrical. The often-dreamlike quality of island life is juxtaposed with the ever-present threat of violence like the calm before a storm. All of the characters are sharply defined. Lucas, with his mixture of real and unearthly qualities, is unique and unforgettable. This is a powerful book to be savored by all who appreciate fine writing and a gripping read.-Sharon Rawlins, Piscataway Public Library, NJ Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Brooks, author of Martyn Pig (2002), offers an-edge-of-the-seat story that has overtones of classics such as The Ox Bow Incident and To Kill a Mockingbird. Fifteen-year-old Cait lives on a small British Island and knows from the moment she sees Lucas walking on the causeway that connects her home to the mainland that he will play a significant part in her life. A handsome, prescient young drifter, Lucas is tagged as a gypsy, a thief, by t
"An ambitious and intricately crafted tale of love and resurrection. . . . Its powerful combination of big ideas and forthright narrative makes this novel likely to linger in readers' minds."--"Publishers Weekly," starred review. Now in paperback.
About the Author
Kevin Brooks is the groundbreaking author of the internationally acclaimed novels DAWN; BLACK RABBIT SUMMER; BEING; THE ROAD OF THE DEAD, a Mystery Writers of America "Edgar" nominee; CANDY; KISSING THE RAIN; LUCAS; and MARTYN PIG, which received England's Branford Boase Award for Best First Novel. Brooks lives in Yorkshire, England.