Christian College Geelong Senior Library: Lovers of literature

Broken by Elizabeth Pulford

A novel that blends, mystery, family life and the subconcious into an interesting story

Critically injured in a motorbike accident, Zara Wilson lies in a coma. She is caught between the world of her hospital room and that of her memories and a dream-like fantasy where she searches for her elusive brother Jem. Zara’s adventures in her subconscious unlock dark secrets and she must face up to her past in order to accept her future. Broken has graphic novel elements in a hard-edged graphic style reminiscent of 1950s’ comic book.

This novel for high school students is best described as a psycho drama but it is a quite a lot more than that.

Zara is in hospital in a coma,  she can hear what those around her are saying, but cannot respond. She was riding on the back of a Triumph motorcycle, having the best time ever, when her brother Jem swerved to avoid a toddler, crashed and was killed outright.

Jem was into comics and Zara was into drawing and this becomes a great part of the narrative. While going from one medical crisis to another, in her sub-conscious mind Zara goes looking for Jem in his comic world. The font size for these episodes is different and comic book illustrations tell of Zara’s search for Jem.

Angus Gomes illustrations are right on the nail supporting the written text beautifully.

A third aspect of plot, also in different font, tells of an episode in Zara’s past when she was 7 years old. She was abducted by a stranger and Zara has never let anybody except Jem into what went on.

While in a coma this incident is worked through also in Zara’s sub conscious mind.

It sounds complicated but Elizabeth Pulford has told it well. Whether it is psychologically kosher I have no idea but it certainly seemed real to me.

For something different yet classy have a crack at this excellent novel. Review by Bob Docherty ‘Bobs Book Blog’
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July 19, 2012 Posted by | Graphic Novels | , | Leave a comment

Skin Deep by Laura Jarratt

Ugly People don’t have feelings. They’re not like everyone else. They don’t notice if you stare at them and turn away. And if they did notice, it won’t hurt them. They’re not like real people. or that’s what I used to think.        


After the car crash that leaves her best friend dead, Jenna is permanently scarred. She struggles to rebuild her life, but every stare in the street, every time she looks in the mirror, makes her want to retreat further from the world. Until she meets Ryan.

Ryan’s a traveller. When he and his mother moor their narrow boat on the outskirts of a village, she tells him this time it will be different. He doesn’t believe her; he can’t imagine why this place shouldn’t be as unwelcoming as the rest. Until he meets Jenna.

But as Jenna and Ryan grow closer, repercussions from the crash continue to reverberate through the community. And then a body is found..                                                                                                                                                                                                 review by Good Reads

April 27, 2012 Posted by | Mystery, Relationships | | Leave a comment

Five Parts Dead by Tim Pegler

What do you do when you’ve just lost three of your best mates?
Who do you turn to when your life is suddenly bound to a wheelchair?

Dan has dodged the Reaper again. If he were a cat, five of his nine lives would be gone—when his mates didn’t even get second chances. He’s still grieving their deaths when he’s dragged on a family holiday at a remote island lighthouse.

Left alone, at what feels like the end of the earth, Dan starts sensing a mysterious girl. Is she a dream? Or has he somehow hooked into the spirit world?

The lighthouse logbook helps illuminate some of the girl’s tragic story but Dan will have to dig deeper to find answers and the inspiration to embrace life again.

Tim Pegler gets inside the minds and hearts of teenagers and captures their voices—spot on.9781921656286-crop-325x325

March 3, 2011 Posted by | Boys' read, Mystery | | 1 Comment

Six by Karen Tayleur

One car.

One after-party.

Six people, six points of view

But only one outcome


Six is a thriller. This novel takes the reader into the lives of six teenagers on the brink of adulthood. The story begins where it ends, in the aftermath of a terrible car accident. But something else is lurking behind the apparently normal lives of these Year 12 students. Five of them have found a body in the woods during the summer. When they report it anonymously, the discovery has implications for them all. Relationships are developing and changing. All of the characters are facing the pressures of Year 12 and the what their future holds. All of them have secrets and the way in which these are revealed is one of the many engaging features of this novel. The ‘Six’ of the title refer to three boys and three girls. Both groups will found this story compelling and haunting.

Review by Black Dog Books

Visit Karen’s website to find more information about the author and her books:  http://www.karentayleur.com/

November 2, 2010 Posted by | Coming of Age, Suspense | , | Leave a comment

The Adoration of Jenna Fox – Mary E Pearson

The Adoration of Jenna Foxjennafox

Part science fiction and part teenage self-discovery, The Adoration of Jenna Fox is a curious blending of the two genres that is as unsettling as it is thought-provoking.

A gripping, utterly engrossing thriller set in a future that may be closer than we think…

Who is Jenna Fox? 17-year-old Jenna has been told that is her name. She has just awoken from a coma, they tell her, and she is still recovering from a terrible accident in which she was involved a year ago. But what happened before that? Jenna doesn’t remember her life. Or does she? And are the memories really hers?
This is a very engrossing, futuristic psychological thriller about a girl brought back from the brink of death after a near-fatal accident. Desperate to save their only daughter, the parents use a highly illegal procedure to rebuild her body, memoires, and feelings- but at what cost? Set in a near-future America, this novel will take you on an unforgettable journey through questions of bio-medical ethics and the nature of humanity.

Mary E Pearsonis the author of several books for teens, including A Room on Lorelei St and Scribbler of Dreams. Her books have received many honours, including the Golden Kite Award, the J Hunter Award for YA Fiction and the South Carolina YA Book Award. The Adoration of Jenna Fox has sold translations rights all over the world and also feature-film rights to 20th Century Fox

Watch YouTube clip The Adoration of Jenna Fox

May 6, 2010 Posted by | Science Fiction | | Leave a comment