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A hard-hitting yet compelling novel examining what it means to be imprisoned as a child and released under a false identity. Boy A is one of two boys tried and convicted of the murder of another child. Jack has a job but first he must learn what it is like to live in a world he last left as a child. The book skips backwards and forwards through the time periods from before Boy A met Boy B to after he left the adult prison with his new name.
Each chapter starts with a letter of the alphabet starting with A is for Apple. A Bad Apple. All the way through to Z, which is for Zero in case you are wondering. Just finding the titles that match the content of each chapter must have been a challenge and the sparse language used with its short sentences is perfect for the subject matter. This book feels like a work of art as well as a captivating tale. As we see the horrors Jack endured in prison it is almost odd that my sympathies were highest when he starts his new job and makes friends, and of course a girlfriend Michelle.
It is here that it becomes apparent how hard it is to hide your entire life up to a point in your twenties. As Jack becomes close to those around him, his enormous secret puts a boundary up between them as he unwillingly hands out lies to cover the truth. But nor is this book just about Boy A, Terry and his life at the point where they overlap tells a different story, a fairly normal one of a broken marriage leading to a strained relationship with his own son as he also guards the truth and builds the lies of the life he hopes to see prove that rehabilitation is possible.
The book is just the right length the author resisting the urge to brow beat the reader and the ending perfectly pitched. A book to ponder over and in the end marvel at how in the right hands, such an emotive topic can be explored. I purchased this book in April A book lover who clearly has issues as obsessed with crime despite leading a respectable life View All Posts. Like Like. Great review! This sounds like an emotional and tough read but also a really interesting one.
Like Liked by 1 person. This book has been on my radar, Cleo, and it certainly does sound compelling. I especially like it that we get to see other dimensions of Jack, and we get a look at how hard it really is to start over again after time in prison. It really did bring home what a life of anonymity might look like. Your review is excellent! It definitely looks at the difficulties that would be encountered after release.
From your review though, this one sounds like it might be a bit more thoughtful? Yes the linking rarely works but today it did! I think this book goes for a more muted look at what life would be like after release from prison when incarceration starts in childhood, but it is still a story so we have some more melodramatic events to keep the plot moving. Now I am intrigued…. Thanks for sharing.
I assume this was based in some way on the awful Jamie Bulger murder. Although it was tightly-plotted and well-written, I had a hard time reading it because of the omnipresent backstory. I think the author was trying to examine what life would be like with such a deed being in the background.
Indeed and when it was written it must have been around the time the boys were being released from detention. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. Like this: Like Loading Author: cleopatralovesbooks A book lover who clearly has issues as obsessed with crime despite leading a respectable life View All Posts.
Wonderful review Cleo. Good going, Cleo Like Like. A brave subject to tackle while memories are still fresh about the Jamie Bulger murder…. I never made the connection in dates but yes thats quite likely Like Like. Leave a Reply, I love hearing what you have to say Cancel reply Enter your comment here Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:.
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Boy A – Jonathan Trigell
This sounds like a book that would put me through the wringer. Anything to do with children being victimized. I think I would have to be in a very strong frame of mind to read something this powerful. That's a good way of putting it.
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A hard-hitting yet compelling novel examining what it means to be imprisoned as a child and released under a false identity. Boy A is one of two boys tried and convicted of the murder of another child. Jack has a job but first he must learn what it is like to live in a world he last left as a child. The book skips backwards and forwards through the time periods from before Boy A met Boy B to after he left the adult prison with his new name. Each chapter starts with a letter of the alphabet starting with A is for Apple.
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