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Daniel (Y7), Colyton Grammar School


An orphan, Beck, in Liverpool is transported to Canada. There he endures pain and hardship on a journey to find a place where even he can belong. This is a truly wonderful book that outlines how hard life was at the time and how far you will go for a home.
Mal Peet and Meg Rosoff are great writers who really can lure you in. In Beck, most loose ends are tied up; I can only really think of one incident that was unexplained. The plot has really helped me to see the world in a more gracious way now that I know how hard life was for Beck then. It also greatly increased my knowledge of the events and actions of this time. When I first started reading Beck, I was really reeled in by the book and I stayed intrigued throughout the whole book. I felt quite emotionally attached to Beck as he has survived so much without help and is a key example if independence. At one point, I was screaming at Beck in my head to go back to Grace. Overall, an amazing and incredibly well-structured plot.
The characters in Beck each have their own individual personality; no two characters are the same or even very similar. In this way, you really get to know the characters in depth. Many characters are not as I expected (Brother Robert) and didn't act the way I thought they would, but that was probably because I don't know much about the people at that time in Canada and the USA. As I have said, I got quite attached to Beck because he went through so much with so little guidance, truly inspirational. I also got fairly attached to Bone and Grace as their descriptions really give you a complete idea of them.
Beck has some of the best and well thought-out​ characters I've read about in a long time.
Beck is extraordinarily written and even though two different authors have written it, it is almost impossible to tell that it's not all written by the same person. The language never really seems difficult to understand and there is the perfect balance between dialogue and narrative. Beck does include a good amount of almost hidden factual information which I am sure is correct. The authors' choice of words definitely describes most scenarios really well and conveys the atmosphere too. Very well written.
I have thoroughly enjoyed Beck and it is now one of my favourite books. I felt very involved and that I was watching the events myself. Any book that can transport me to a different time and/or country whilst I read is a good one. I believe the age rating is 13-18 although 12 and 11 year olds should still understand it. I think many people my age would enjoy this book and I will recommend it to others.
One of the best books I've read, definitely.
MARK OUT OF 10: 8.5

Posted on: 29th April 2017 at 09:16 am

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