Young Adult – Changeover

Laura has always been a little bit different. She gets “warnings” before life-changing events, such as the day her father moved out of the house. But there’s nothing she can do to change things. Then one day, a “warning” day, her little brother Jacko becomes the victim of a ancient evil, and suddenly Laura is the only one that can stop the evil being from killing her brother. Desperate for help, she turns to the Sorry, a local boy that she has known for years is a witch.

This book is nearly thirty years old now, but it is still a thrilling read. If it were not for the outdated cover art, I suspect that many of today’s teens would not even realize that the story is old enough to have been read by their parents. Since Laura’s family has very little money the lack of expensive electronics makes sense, and any slight changes in slang or fashions can be explained away by the New Zealand setting.

I had a few problems with Sorry’s behavior. Not necessarily with his actions, because I felt that he was very real and his actions made sense, but with Laura’s re-actions. There were a few times that I felt she should have been more upset, or more strongly uncomfortable, but perhaps that is simply me projecting how I would have felt in that scenario. By the end of the book I thought their interactions were spot on. While the main plot of the book is tied up with a bow, there remains an entire other chapter that looks at the ways in which Laura’s relationships amongst her family and friends have changed. I thought the way that her maybe-romance with Sorry was handled was done perfectly. The uncertain-certainty of what will happen in the future is much more appealing than ending the story with a passionate embrace and vows of “forever”.

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