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

Wednesday 17 October 2018

Review: Shine Mountain

Everyone has gathered waiting for Pop to die. He has requested a party after he’s gone. So the family waits. He tells his granddaughter Ellie about the magical Button Box that has been kept under his bed for years and how it must be buried with him. And it is.

Pop’s lawyer knows the power of the Box from the Gleam country. He digs it up and steals away with it. Ellie sees him, but to avoid giving Oma more pain and suffering on this pain-filled day, she says nothing.

The Button Box carries a history of both good and bad happenings connected to its use. Nothing it could serve up or break apart could compare with the truths that Oma is forced to tell Ellie about her real identity. 

Ellie sets out to retrieve the Box and destroy it and all the bad luck it carries. Also to discover who she really is. On her way, she encounters Meridian, a future and past teller that recognizes the same gift in Ellie. She is the girl’s port in a storm.

Charged and interesting roles are played out in this novel. There is Nanny the talking goat with powers of her own, who protects Ellie and leads her to her destination. Luca, Meridian’s nephew, becomes the Lightning Boy after he discovers the hidden truths about his life. He too, sets out on a quest to find his roots.  He and Ellie have many things in common; they are strong, fearless, focused and courageous. Then there’s the mysterious ghostly old man that follows them, who neither eats, drinks or sleeps.

This is a mysterious magical quest for truth, identity, and reparation. It is designed to shine a light on the importance and necessity of stories handed down over time.  It is a movement of music in four parts. The story is made up of strands of the characters’ lives interwoven with the strongest strand being Ellie, in the middle, to hold it all together.   

Title: Shine Mountain
Author: Julie Hunt
Publisher: Allen & Unwin, $16.99
Publication Date: April 2018
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781760291501
For ages: 15+
Type: Young Adult Fiction