Friday 10 June 2022

Blogjune Day 10 - Out on the wiley windy moors...

Today's question: Recommend something to read for a weekend away.

Here's a clue:

No, the book isn't Wuthering Heights... it's Waking Romeo by Kathryn Barker.

It's one of my favourite books from 2021, and I'm glad I can finally talk about it, as I was recently a judge in the Young Adult category of the Aurealis Awards, and as such, I needed to keep my trap shut until the winners were announced - which they were last month.

I read a total of 40 novels in my judging commitments, and whilst there was plenty of excellent contenders, this one shone above it all. I'm not going to talk about the plot, as I feel like I can't say too much without ruining the plot... but imagine if time travel was possible, but you could only go forward in time, what would you do? If the world's going to crap, do you keep jumping forward? (Oh, and if you jump forward into a space where matter exists, you die horribly.)

From this premise, Kathryn Barker has crafted an intricately layered time travel adventure, peppered with references to Shakespeare and Wuthering Heights, touching upon themes of sustainability, and considering how we want to leave this world for the next generation. It's also very funny. And very nerdy - especially if you like closing off causal time loops.

Not only did it win the Best Young Adult Novel category, but also Best Science Fiction Novel, so it was highly regarded by judges at all levels - don't let the YA audience put you off (and really, you shouldn't anyway).

Speaking of Wuthering Heights, I start rehearsal this weekend for a group that will be performing Kate Bush's iconic dance at the National Portrait Gallery on 2 July - the Most Wuthering Heights Day Ever. We'll be raising money for the Domestic Violence Crisis Service, and you can donate here. There are performances all over the world, so keep an eye out for one near you!

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