Friday 23 January 2009

The Burying Beetle - Ann Kelley

The Burying Beetle – Ann Kelley

Pages: 192
Publisher: Luarth Press
Release Date: 7th July 2005

Other Titles in the Series: The Bower Bird, Inchworm

Meet Gussie. Twelve years old and has just moved from London into her new ramshackle home on a cliff top above St Ives. She has an irrepressible zest for life. She also has a life-threatening heart condition.

For a book containing a child that could die any moment and divorce, The Burying Beetle is surprisingly uplifting. Gussie is full of life and spirit and even a life-threatening heart condition can’t bring her down. She lives every moment as if it were her last; cramming her mind full of knowledge about everything from local history to science and nature. Her biggest fear is not learning about everything that the world has to offer before she dies. This is one of the many things that makes Gussie very different to most 12-year-olds, it’s quite refreshing actually. Although it does make me feel guilty about moaning about college when college is one of the things that Gussie would love to do but may not be able to.

Ann Kelley writes beautifully. The images she creates of St Ives make you want to be in Peregrine Cottage looking down on Gussie’s beach and over the rooftops of the town. Her writing is soft in a way that mutes the harsh reality of life while not smothering it completely. I can’t describe how much I loved this novel. All I can really say is go out and find a copy and be blown away by a fantastic story.
Sophie x

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