Back to Blackbrick by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald

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Back to Blackbrick by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald

Category: Confident Readers
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Loralei Haylock
Reviewed by Loralei Haylock
Summary: A beautifully pitched book about seeing a grandparent deteriorate due to Alzheimer's. A pitch perfect book that had me hooked from the first page and refused to let go.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 240 Date: February 2013
Publisher: Orion
ISBN: 978-1444006599

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Cosmo thought he had enough problems, with his absent mother, ridiculous name, and status as 'loser kid' at school. But his Grandfather isn't the man he used to be - the man that Cosmo idolised. Sometimes, he can't remember what day it is, or where certain things go in the kitchen. And then other times, he can't remember who Cosmo is, or that Brian, Cosmo's brother, died. Cosmo does all he can to help him, but post-its on the cupboards and omega-3 oils aren't enough to keep doctors from coming to assess Grandfather and deciding he needs to be taken into full time care.

When Grandfather makes Cosmo promise to go to Blackbrick Abbey and unlock a gate, Cosmo has to go, even though he thinks it's crazy. He's a man of his word, and never breaks a promise. But when he opens the gate, Cosmo finds himself face to face with a sixteen year old version of his grandfather, and possibly the key to saving his grandfather in the future.

To say this is a book about time travel is an understatement. It is a book about time travel, but it's also a book about pain and loss; the need to hold on to the past, but also to let go of it.

Cosmo's very straight narrative is perfectly judged, never patronising or annoying. You really relate to him and his struggle against the odds to bring his grandfather back, and there are a couple of laugh out loud moments because of his innocence.

I wasn't sure how old he was meant to be, and I guessed the twist at the end within about five minutes of Cosmo being in the past - though I think that's more symptomatic of the fact I read a lot of time travel books! - but apart from that, this was a pitch perfect book that had me hooked from the first page and refused to let go. A fantastic debut from an author to watch.

My thanks to the publishers for sending a copy.

This reminded me a lot of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne, though less harrowing. Slightly older readers might also enjoy The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon.

Buy Back to Blackbrick by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Back to Blackbrick by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy Back to Blackbrick by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Back to Blackbrick by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald at Amazon.com.


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