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Book DetailsISBN: 9781742371160
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Book Review: Loblolly Boy by James Norcliffe - Reviewed by Larissa (18 Jul 2011)
For as long as Michael can remember he has lived within the high walls containing the Great House and its gardens. It would have been a wonderful place, were it not for the teasing from the other children, the berating from the Keepers, and the disgusting food forced upon him; not to mention the vicious dogs.
Just like Peter Pan he appeared all dressed in green with promises of flying and freedom. Michael had thought the Loblolly Boy had come to rescue him, instead he found he had become the Loblolly Boy, and the Loblolly Boy had become him.
Life as a Loblolly Boy was wonderful; you are free, are able to fly and are invisible. A Loblolly Boy can go anywhere, and do anything. Soon, however, Michael discovers why a Loblolly Boy would choose to exchange lives, a Loblolly Boy can not eat, has no home and no one to talk to, and no one to love them.
The Loblolly Boy is a timeless tale; a great story that is fun, warm and full of excitement. Everyone has at some time felt out of place, has longed for a life that's not their own. In The Loblolly Boy we are given that chance of escape from our lives, but at a price. Here there is a lesson to be learnt; that no matter appearances, the grass is not always greener.
James Norcliffe is a Christchurch-based, award-winning poet with six collections published, and five novels for young adults. The Assassin of Gleam won the Sir Julius Vogel Award for the best New Zealand fantasy novel of 2006, and was shortlisted for the Esther Glen Award. James teaches in Lincoln University's Foundation Studies department, and lives with his wife Joan Melvyn and an ungrateful cat called Pinky Bones in Church Bay, on Lyttelton Harbour.
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