'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.' - author Jackie French

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Review: Crashing Down

Lucy is in Year 12 and under pressure to succeed. Breaking up with her boyfriend Carl, who is becoming way too intense and demanding, seems like an obvious way to reduce her stress levels and improve her focus.

Unfortunately, sometimes good decisions can have bad consequences and Lucy is about to discover that breaking up with Carl is going to be a lot more trouble than she could ever have anticipated.

Readers of Kate McCaffrey’s previous novel Destroying Avalon won’t be surprised to discover that she is once again posing a series of interesting and challenging ethical questions within a fast moving, emotionally intense story.

On the night Lucy breaks up with Carl, he crashes his car, breaking his best friend’s neck and leaving himself in a coma. For Lucy, this is the start of a rapidly intensifying series of questions and doubts about the role she has played in Carl’s accident, his erratic behaviour leading up to their break-up, and the best way for her to deal with the emotional decisions that need to be made.

Crashing Down features a series of ethical and emotional dilemmas. These focus primarily on Lucy but the experiences and emotions of Lucy and Carl’s families and friends also contribute to create a complex network of issues, ideas and perspectives.

Despite the complexity and intensity of the issues faced by Lucy, Crashing Down is a very easy book to read. I did struggle with one character, one of Lucy’s friends whose jumbled words and inappropriate comments did serve a purpose within the text but also became irritatingly inane at times, but I was generally very impressed with the way the characters worked within the story to offer a diversity of viewpoints on the issues raised.

Not a book for those looking for a light-hearted beach read, Crashing Down is instead a very engaging and challenging novel for those looking for a book that will make them think, with a storyline that will linger and continue to raise questions long after the final page is read.

There are teachers’ notes available for this novel.

Title: Crashing Down
Author: Kate McCaffrey 
Publisher: Fremantle Press, $19.99 RRP
Publication Date: August 2014
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781922089854
For ages: 14+
Type: Young Adult

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