Release Date: 6th March 2014
Edition: UK paperback, review copy
A boy. A girl. A bump. Trouble.
Hannah’s smart and funny...she’s also fifteen and pregnant. Aaron is new at school and doesn’t want to attract attention. So why does he offer to be the pretend dad to Hannah’s unborn baby?
Growing up can be trouble but that’s how you find out what really matters?
Non Pratt’s debut is honest, emotional completely beguiling.
If asked, I would say that the subject of teen pregnancy doesn’t have the same impact on people my age anymore; it’s not that big of a taboo. Enter Hannah and the react she gets from her classmates and I may have to change my mind. Hannah has a bit of a reputation. Most people at her school weren’t too surprised that she got pregnant, but I was surprised by how they reacted. It seems a little naive of me, but I was shocked at the sheer meanness of the people who were supposed to be her friends, although I think that has a lot to do with the ‘friends’ that she had. God, they made me angry! The bullying, manipulation and intimidation was awful and I even had to put Trouble down for a minute or two at certain moments! I was so glad when she realised what these people were really like.
Aaron is in a different class altogether: struggling with guilt and shame and desperately trying to stay under the radar while attempting to satisfy his parent’s by trying to fit in. He’s so closed off and secretive, and before Hannah became pregnant, I imagine she may have been one of the ones to try and make his school life miserable... For that reason, I’m very glad she was up the duff! Aaron and Hannah seemed so different from the very beginning, but I loved the way they found what they needed in each other; something they didn’t expect or know they would need. Aaron treated Hannah as a person and not a body and Hannah gave Aaron someone to concentrate on and look after. Someone to fight for in a way.
Hannah’s experience of pregnancy over the course of the novel goes from fear to excitement to wonder to grief, almost. It’s an emotional rollercoaster. Especially as we heard from both Hannah and Aaron in a really lovely style of split narration where there aren’t rigid chapters for either narrator, but they chop and change under a date in the way of a diary format. It was refreshing to have a real mixture of lengths in the sections; it really amped up feelings of uncertainty, worry and anticipation for me as I was reading.
At its heart, Trouble is about loss, family, friendship and someone to have your back when you need them. It’s a gorgeous novel and I’m so looking forward to seeing what else Non Pratt has up her sleeve.
Thanks to Walker for sending me a copy for review.