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- author Jackie French

Monday 4 February 2013

Review: Catch the Zolt (The Debt instalment One)

Dom Silvagni, indifferent student and elite middle distance runner, is turning 15 and it is time for him to find out about the family secret.

Dom’s family owe an ancient debt to a secretive organisation known simply as The Debt. Now that Dom is 15, it is his turn to make the six Instalments required from each Silvagni male or sacrifice a pound of flesh in payment.

Dom’s first challenge is to catch the Zolt, a 17-year-old Facebook bandit who has a penchant for stealing light aircraft from wealthy Gold Coast residents. Can Dom succeed where the police and private investigators have all failed? Does he have any choice?

Catch the Zolt sets the scene well for this six book action series for tweens and teens. We meet Dom, his family and various friends and gradually build a picture of Dom’s life as he tries to deal with this first challenge from The Debt. With Dom, we grow increasingly suspicious of his father’s attitude to the challenges Dom must face and increasingly aware just how few people Dom can now trust.

It is great to see another great action series for young readers set in Australia, offering familiar locations and dialogue. The series promises to develop an interesting secondary theme within Dom’s own family in addition to the thrill of the challenges he must overcome to make the six Instalments to The Debt.

There is some very mild course language used within the text and some sense of menace as Dom is aware that he is being watched by agents from The Debt to ensure he completes his task, but the books are suitable for readers from older primary age and onwards.

The second book in the series, Turn off the Lights, is already available and the third book, Bring Back Cerberus, is due for release in March 2013. There is a competition linked with the release of the first two books in the series, which can be accessed via The Debt website.

Title:  Catch the Zolt (The Debt Instalment One)
Author:  Phillip Gwynne
Publisher: Allen & Unwin, $14.99 RRP
Publication Date: 2 January 2013
Format:  Paperback
ISBN:  9781742378442
For ages:  10 - 14 years
Type: Young adult fiction