22 January 2015

Being Jack

This fourth and last book winds up the exceptional Jack series. It has been fourteen years since the release of I am Jack, inspired by the fact that Susanne’s son was bullied as a boy. Translated all over the world, the Jack series has encouraged many to fight against this scourge that has ruined or taken lives of all ages, mostly those of school children. An anti-bullying advocate, Gervay has used these stories as tools for awareness and movement towards change in attitudes towards bullying.

In Being Jack, the same themes from the previous books continue. Bullying is the main thread tied beautifully together in tight, clever prose with loss - of a parent leaving, and loss and grief of losing a much loved older grandparent. Ageing and its liberties, family, ethnic issues and blended families weave into and through jokes and fun, and the agony of change and growing up.

Jack is now thirteen. We view his private thoughts and experiences. Due to Gervay’s ability to approach and express emotions with rare sensitivity, we share all things with Jack.

Gervay loves difficult subjects and drawing on real life has enriched her writing, and therefore every reader’s life, regardless of age. As we say goodbye to Jack, we must thank him and his creator for the life lessons we’ve learnt from his character.

Reviewed by Anastasia Gonis

Title: Being Jack
Author: Susanne Gervay
Illustrator: Cathy Wilcox
Publisher: Harper Collins
Publication Date: September 2014 $14.99RRP
 Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780732296148
Type:  Junior novel

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