Going Too Far by David Lukens

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Going Too Far by David Lukens

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Category: Teens
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: A book which every adult who has ever written kids off as nuisances should read - and every kid who has felt that adults are against them will love. A good story with some great characters.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 180 Date: April 2012
Publisher: David Lukens

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Adults of a certain age remember a time when kids were respectful when you met them in the street. They certainly didn't answer you back, skateboard on the pavements and take drugs, so the idea of electing a sheriff - the man in overall charge of the police in a town - who pledged to get tough on these kids appealed to them. In fact, what's not to like about the idea? It takes crime off the streets, makes the town a safer place and it must be better that kids are taught to obey the law. Common sense, when you think about, isn't it? Well, there is another side to the story. What if these kids are just having a bit of innocent fun in an area that was little more than a traffic island? What if the drug taking is hardly serious? What if one of the kids dies?

Because that's what happened in Kingsmere Circus where the kids used to go to skateboard and generally hang out. Jack had been there one evening but didn't know that there was a problem until well into the next day. One of his classmates, Craig, had been found dead and there was evidence to suggest that drugs were involved although there was no obvious cause of death. At first Jack was prepared to accept that it was just one of those dreadful things that happens, but then Katy persuaded him that there was more to the story than was being made public. Jack was still reluctant to get involved. His friend Will waivered a little but Katy was determined.

Going Too Far is the story of how three teenagers took on the adult world. It wasn't that the adults didn't care about Craig, but rather that they thought that it was quite possible that drugs had been involved. Even Craig's Dad would have said that his son was no angel. It's an accidental discovery by Katy which changes the way that the teenagers think about Craig's death - but who can they trust with what they know? The sheriff is up for re-election in a matter of days and he controls the police - and besides his views on the kids are well known. Who could they turn too, particularly when it looked as though they were in physical danger too?

It's a story which is all too believable. It only takes unbridled ambition and a lack of conscience to bring about circumstances where a child's death can be swept under the carpet and David Lukens does a good job of producing a situation which many adults see as being perfectly reasonable, something which is to everyone's advantage whilst maintaining an air of menace so far as the kid are concerned. He's helped by his characters - the boys who are not gung-ho about getting involved whilst the girl is determined - and his sensitive touch with their relationships.

I expected the plot to take a slightly different track but I really wasn't certain about how it would all work out. The combination of some adult indifference, a couple of compelling baddies and even a river which seems determined to engulf the town and you get a very good story.

I'd like to thank the publisher for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

If this book appeals then yo might also enjoy Illegal by Miriam Halahmy and When I Was Joe by Keren David.

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Buy Going Too Far by David Lukens at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Going Too Far by David Lukens at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy Going Too Far by David Lukens at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Going Too Far by David Lukens at Amazon.com.


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