Thursday, November 10, 2016

Hartnett, Sonya. Golden Boys.

Hartnett, Sonya.  Golden Boys.  Candlewick Press      2016  238p.  $17.99  ISBN 978-0-7636-7949-1  ms/hs  Realistic fiction  VG   

When the Jensons move to a new, middle-class suburb, the children, Colt and Bastian, are the envy of the other kids in the community. Their father, Rex, showers his children with elaborate gifts, and this entices the neighboring children to visit their home often. However, there is something strange about Rex that becomes apparent when he becomes extremely attentive and helpful to the Colt’s and Bastian’s new friends. Rex is a dentist, attractive and always willing to help. Colt does not like his father’s involvement with his new friends, and the friends do not understand his discomfort with his father’s involvement with them.

Written and published first in Australia in 2014, this novel’s language and dialect make it fun and entertaining to read. For example, “carpark” means “parking lot”. The story is engaging and keeps the reader wondering about the strangeness and possible secret that the Jensons are harboring. As conflicts arise, they seem to be easily resolved, although the reader feels that there is something lying just below the surface. The final conflict resolves itself in an unanticipated manner and leaves the reader wondering what happens next. This is surely a book that will inspire discussion.

Summary: The Jensons have moved to a new, middle-class suburb and are the envy of the other children in the community; however, there is something strange about them, especially in regard to the father, Rex, who showers his kids with elaborate gifts and is extremely attentive and helpful to Colt and Bastian Jenson’s new friends.

Friendship-Fiction, Families-Fiction            --Virginia McGarvey

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