Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Trouble - Non Pratt

Published: March 6th 2014, Walker Books
Pages: 384 pages, paperback
Series/standalone?: Standalone
Acquired: Kindly lent to me by the lovely Caroline from Big Book Little Book

Summary (from Goodreads): A boy. A girl. A bump. Trouble.

Hannah’s smart and funny ... she’s also fifteen and pregnant. Aaron is new at school and doesn’t want to attract attention. So why does he offer to be the pretend dad to Hannah’s unborn baby? 

Growing up can be trouble but that’s how you find out what really matters.

Story: Teenage pregnancy - obviously a big deal. But how to make it stand out from every other teenage pregnancy novel? Well, debut author Non Pratt has done just that, as Trouble transcends the 'teenage pregnancy' story and gives us a funny, poignant, hopeful novel about Hannah and her struggle with life, love and, of course, a growing bump.
Writing: Everything about Trouble feels fresh and current - particularly the language the characters use. I didn't feel as though I was reading a book - I felt as though I was there in the park with Hannah as she watched her classmates getting drunk and pairing off around her. Pratt's voices are so clear and so defined that you don't feel as though you're reading about strangers, you feel as though you're talking to a friend about their problems and that makes for such a memorable reading experience. I feel as though I know these teenagers; they aren't just kids in a book, they're perfect echoes of my friends, my old classmates, myself. The language, the speech patterns, the quick witted comebacks - it's all spot on.
Characters: Hannah is the perfect representation of a wayward teen who wants to act like an adult without any of the responsibility that comes with it. We see her go on such a journey throughout Trouble and it's lovely to see her character grow and develop as her story arc progresses. She's a really good example of how to create a flawed character who is utterly loveable, rather than a 2D heroine who is so perfect it's sickening. What teenager doesn't have a bit of an attitude? It's great to see a novel focusing on a teenager who has a bit of a naughty streak and heads down the pub to get drunk with boys - it makes a nice change from the 'quirky' characters we so often see teens represented as.
Katie, Hannah's best friend at the beginning of the book, had a particularly interesting story and my mind changed about her so often throughout the book - she really provoked a reaction out of me, which is a real testament to Pratt's strong writing and storytelling skills. I'm not going to talk too much about Katie, for fear of spoilers, but sheesh, with friends like that…

Final thoughts: I don't know how, but Trouble managed to surpass the ridiculously high expectations I had of it. Pratt's debut is an absolute winner.

2 comments:

  1. Ooh! This was so good, wasn't it? I LOVED it and am pleased you did too! :D

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  2. Surpassed your expectations - wow! I'm so pleased you enjoyed it, I am going to be reading this next and now I can't wait (well, even more can't wait if that's physically possible!) :D

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Thank you kindly for the comment, you sweet thing.