Sunday 2 March 2014

Review: Dandelion Clocks - Rebecca Westcott

Dandelion Clocks by Rebecca Westcott will be loved by fans of Jacqueline Wilson, Cathy Cassidy or Annabel Pitcher.

Liv takes us on a journey through her life from "Thirteen Weeks Before" to "Six Months After". We discover Liv's passion for photography, her brother's obsession with sticking to the rules, the stupidity of Moronic Louise at school, and how the family copes as Mum's terminal illness takes hold . . . Guided by Mum's own childhood diaries, Liv finds a new way to live.

This book is real, funny, utterly touching and absolutely heartwarming. Despite the sadness at the heart of the story, every reader will laugh and keep on turning the pages, charmed by Liv and her mum.

Visit Rebecca Westcott's website for more information

Dandelion Clocks is an absolutely stunning debut novel from new British talent Rebecca Westcott. It is a beautifully moving book that touches on some very difficult subjects - everything from grief and loss through to finding your identity and even living with a family member with Asperger's Syndrome. This is the kind of story that tugs on your heartstrings, it will break your heart and make you cry but it will also leave you feeling warm and fuzzy inside and with a huge smile on your face.

Liv is an eleven year old girl with a lot on her plate, she may be the younger sibling but having an older brother with Asperger's means she is usually the one who has to be in control. She loves Isaac and they have a fantastic bond but that doesn't make it any less frustrating having to live her life by all kinds of rules just so that Isaac feels comfortable. I had to admire Liv for how patient she is towards her brother, she is very protective of him and she does her best to help him understand the world around him. Liv's story starts several months before her mother's death and we follow her journey as she tries to come to terms with what is going to happen right through the grieving process until a few months after her mother is gone when Liv is struggling to cope with the aftermath.

This isn't always an easy story to read, it is painful and heartbreaking but at the same time it shows that life does go on. Things don't always turn out the way you want or expect them too but you have to find a way to cope and keep moving forward. Liv finds comfort in reading her mother's diaries, they make her feel less alone and give her a sense of connection even after her mother is no longer there. She also has to help her brother understand what has happened and along with their father they have to make new rules that will comfort and reassure Isaac now that their world has turned upside down. There are some incredibly poignant moments between all of the family members throughout the book and it's a story I'm not going to forget any time soon.

Dandelion Clocks is heartbreaking, emotional, devastating and sad but it is also thought provoking, funny, uplifting and hopeful. It's a powerful book and one I can't recommend highly enough. I can't wait to see what Rebecca Westcott writes in the future!

Source: Received from Puffin in exchange for an honest review

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