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Alfie, South Molton Community College - Carnegie


The book Beck, by Mal Peet, was really a good read for me. I loved this book a lot and I think it could easily win the Carnegie award. The book takes us on an unforgiving journey through the harsh scenarios of 1900 Britain through narrative eyes of a young black boy in a white country. The reader can gain a lot of historical knowledge whilst reading this book, the main incentive being how all of the men treated Beck, they called him 'chocolate' and treated him differently from all of the other kids. The book focuses on many real life world problems: racism, sexual abuse and cruelty which I think gives the reader a reason to stay. They want to see how this child gets himself out of the situation as maybe they know that they wouldn't know what to do in those scenarios. At some points I felt like I had to stop reading because the cruelty and abuse that was hurled at Beck could so easily be my life and I realise, thanks to reading this book, that maybe I am very lucky not to be him but I also had the urge to keep reading as if I was stuck to it as I felt deep sorrow for Beck and needed to know if he was ok.

Besides Beck, all of the other characters that are portrayed to us have a mean, unforgiving and unmoraled way of living which, to the reader, gives an impression of Beck being a goldfish in a shark tank and I think that is a great and rare way to look at a book and that's why I think Mal Peet gets the edge on creative and special. My last point before the recommendations would be I like how the book gives a sense of no matter how rough the road goes, there is always hope. And I think this is a really strong message to take from a book and only few books do that.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone ranging from 13 upwards really. Could easily be read by an adult.

Posted on: 22nd May 2017 at 09:51 pm

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