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Alfie, South Molton Community College - Carnegie

The Smell of Other People's Houses

I found whilst reading this book that there was quite a complex scheme. The way that the chapters kept switching between characters was quite a tricky thing to get my head around. It was a very good book all the way through, I like how the reader gets a first person account of 4 individual characters and they way the feel about each other. This gives a whole new dimension to the book and makes it stand out from most other books in my view. Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock also made the characters very different people and I think this makes the book a more relatable read. This is because there is a higher chance that a reader might have the same feelings about something as a character does in the book, and this engages the reader because they might want to find out what the characters did about their feelings. Yes, it was a confusing book to acknowledge (for me) but I can still see how well the book had been made. The author really had clearly thought of everything and glued it all together very intelligently. If I had to relate myself to a character, I would Hank. This is not only because he is the only boy out of the four, but the way Hank deals with the scenarios he has been given by the unfortunate circumstances is admirable to me. All the tough times he has had to lead through and be the role model for his younger brother. The book did increase my knowledge about 1970s Alaska, I did not know life, on the whole, was quite a scary and daunting place for children at this time. In the quite small and punchy book the reader is given a wave of abusive and neglectful parents, a teen pregnancy, foster families and runaways, and all of these produce an action packed couple hundred pages. I think the thing that really grabbed my attention however was the reality of it all, if I was in 1970s Alaska then I don't know how I would've felt with things. The reality of the characters makes the book more relatable to a younger audience so I would definitely recommend this action-packed thriller to a person of my age or above,13-16. On the whole I very much enjoyed this read and I'm ready for my next one!

Posted on: 18th April 2017 at 10:55 pm

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