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The book has resonated in my heart a long time after I finished reading it. The book encompasses two main languages: the language of love and the language of music. Set in Australia in the mid-80s, "Wonderboy" is a coming of age story that centers on the theme of self- fulfillment and happiness. The message that one should never give up his dreams and ambitions, no matter what obstacles life puts in his way, comes through loud and clear.
This is the story of Jack, a gifted eleven years old kid, who discovers the capability of music to brighten up the day. Jack is a shy, timid, dreamy and lonely boy who finds refuge in his beautiful drawings and his make-believe world. Just like his dad, Daniel, Jack has trouble making friends and he watches the world from the sidelines. Jack and his older brother Simon don't get along. Jack is a gifted artist but his mother, Jean, doesn't encourage his drawing, as she thinks they are a waste of time. In fact, Jean doesn't understand Jack at all. She clearly prefers his older brother over him and supports his chosen sport endeavors. Luckily, Jack has got his father on his team.
Things start to get lively when Juliet, a world-renowned opera singer, and her daughter, Mel, come back to the sleepy town of Miller’s Creek and move to the boarded up farm next door. Jack finds in Mel a kindred soul and they become inseparable. They share an almost mystical connection that binds their threads of lives, with the inspiring encouragement of their new teacher, Rush.
Jack’s mother, Jean, doesn't approve of the blooming friendship. Rumors about steamy affairs and inappropriate conduct are abounded and wagging tongues threaten to put a stop to their little piece of paradise. It is up to Jack to bring a change to the stagnant town, as well as to put a stop to the vicious rumors flying around.
The reader is pulled into the life of Jack and his friends and quickly wrapped up in their lives. It isn't a very intense action-packed plot, but it is a very emotional ride. I got totally immersed in the book and was lost in its world. The author introduces readers to a cast of rich, believable characters which come to life with the stroke of a pen. The characters leap out of the page as real flesh and blood people, they are that well fleshed out. I got to know the characters and what they went through mattered to me.
Kudos to the author for a well written book! The writing style was extremely pleasant to read and easy to follow. Each scene was vividly described and memorable. Relationships gone awry, love lost and found and the healing powers of music, all those elements are just a small portion of this enhancing book. The ending caught me by surprise and took my breath away. I did not see that one coming.
I greatly enjoyed the book and found it a great read. It was very refreshing to read a well edited book and without sex scenes to boot. The premise was sound, the execution supreme and the characters endearing and realistic to boot. I found the book a brilliant read, so I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars! The book is of the young-adult genre and as such gears toward the young adult audience, but will appeal to adults as well. I highly recommend this book!
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