Tuesday, November 26, 2019

The Stuff of Nightmares by Malorie Blackman


2007
Kyle encounters death when a train is derailed as he is travelling on a school trip. The only way to avoid death is to live in the nightmares of the other passengers.
Malorie Blackman admits that she has based the nightmares on some that she has had and that she has used some of these in other stories she has written. A full list is provided on the copyright page.  She also admits that she has been able to pinpoint the real life events that have led to the nightmares.  This is all discussed in the Author’s Note at the end of the book.  Possibly the book could lead to a discussion on the interpretation of dreams.
There is plenty of tension and pace throughout the novel and Blackman keeps us guessing as to whether Kyle will survive and if others in the train crash will live.
The hardback version is 338 pages long, uses a serif font, size 13/14 and the text is blocked. The chapters are reasonably short.    

The Devil's Angel by Kevin Brooks


2007


Dean certainly seems like a devil yet his friendship with protagonist Jack is sincere and firm. They have a grand adventure together but it does not end well.  However, their friendship continues until Jack has enough of the hard times they share together. Timing is not good; they are about to get a record deal with for their band. Jack later feels responsible for Dean’s death which he can also trace back to the time when he was stabbed as thy set off on their grand adventure.  Jack has mixed emotions about this friendship.     

This book is a high-low produced by Barrington Stoke who specialise in such books.  They are tested for children and young people by children and young people.  
The chapters are short.  The print is clear in a non-serif font and is formatted ragged right.  It is printed on pale yellow paper. Thus there are several aids for  the dyslexic reader.  

The Age Between – Personal Reflections on Youth Fiction

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