Posts Tagged ‘Gangs’

Long way down

By Jason Reynolds

Illustrated by Chris Priestley

ISBN 9780571335114

Those who follow this blog probably know how much I love verse novels. I love everything about them, especailly the language and how it can pack a punch.  Long way down  knocked me sideways. William Holloman’s brother has just been murdered. He wishes he had laughed more at his brother’s dumb jokes because he won’t ever get the chance again. His brother is dead. Tragedy seeps through every page of this book. The language is real and gritty. It is powerful, beautiful and haunting.

After his brother’s death Will knows one thing for sure. He must follow the rules.

  1. Don’t cry
  2. Don’t snitch
  3.  Get revenge

It is raw and dark and I will think about Will for a long, long time. After reading this book I had to just sit awhile and reflect on the lives of the characters. The reality is that there are many William Hollomans in this world and we need to change this. How? I don’t know the answer but something has to change for people like William. They get caught up in the world of poverty, gangs, hardship and anger. This book takes us in to Will’s world, and his thoughts. It is a dark and scary world and as tough as he is trying to be, we see his vulnerability. We hear his thoughts and we find ourselves caring for him in a way only good writing can make us. An amazing insight into the sad and desparate life of a young man looking for revenge. Loved it so much. Need to read again.

Listen to the first few pages being read by the author. 

Body blow
By Peter Cocks.
Walker Books UK April 2012

Eddie Savage is 18 and on the run. Having been shot and left for dead by London’s largest crime family Eddie survives but must hide. Sun, sea and girls, that’s the way he sees it in his new hiding place in Spain. But Spain has its own turf wars. You can run but you can’t hide. This sounds a great one for the guys but thrillers really are for everyone.

Long Reach
By Peter Cocks

This is the first book in the Eddie Savage series. The criminal underwold is a vicious place to be and an even more dangerous place to leave. This first book is set in the ganglands of South London where Eddie is working undercover in order to find the truth about his older brother. Action and danger everywhere. How far will the Kelly gang go?