Orangeboy

Publisher: Hodder Children’s Books

Review

Quiet, unassuming Marlon can't believe it when the hottest girl in school picks him as her date to the fair. It's too good to be true.

But when a mysterious tragedy strikes, Marlon is determined to reveal the chain that links him to the criminal underworld. He starts getting the wrong sort of attention, as investigations tangle him into a web of gangs.

Mystery, intrigue and a big cast of dangerous characters give this gritty thriller a sophisticated edge within the YA genre. It's a tightly woven plot with revenge at its core. Urban settings, street language and sensitively drawn situations make this a thoughtful and diverse read.

The dangerous reality of drug pushing and youths being forced into dealing is an important topic, but Lawrence hasn't set out to preach to a society that needs warning. She's simply written a pacey crime thriller that feels unique, realistic and truthful.

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