International Writers Magazine:Young
Last Free Cat by Jon Blake
Hodder ISBN: 978-0-340-94474-8
future without cats - most are dead of the deadly HN51 virus. Only
the very rich can afford cats now and they are strictly controlled
- ordinary people live in fear of catching a deadly flu from untagged
Into Jade's garden
walks Feela, a beautiful female cat with no collar. Jade has never seen
a cat and is immediately transfixed and just a little afraid. Jade and
her mother have fallen for the animal and hide it. It will change their
lives forever. She tries to keep it from her best freind Kris, but itsn't
very good at it and he makes friends with Feela immediately, but doesn't
give them away. The ruthless comprots (Government Child Protectors)
now rule England and what they say goes and they say no cats. When Jade
sees her Doctor with a scratch he calls in the comprots and they raid
her house. Although Feela has mysteriously disappeared, the comprots
do so much damage and are so threatening her mother dies of a heart
attack. Luckily Kris has stolen Feela that day.
Now Jade, Kris and Feela are on the run from social services. They are
trying to get to Ireland where cats cat still roam free.
This is a thrilling
story for kids 8-12 and any age. Curiously the second cat book I have
reviewed this year, the first being The
Catkin by Nick Green, about kids learning to be cats.
The Last Free Cat sets Kris and Jade, barely in their mid-teens,
against the whole of England and the vicious comprots. They flee, never
knowing who will betray them. They get a ride from a truck driver Finn,
who eyes the catbox greedily and tries to steal Feela. Kris has to fight
for the cat in an illegal street market. He wins and they steal his
truck but wreck it under a low bridge.Then there's a boarding house
where the owners grow suspicious and afraid of Kris and Jade and call
the comprots. Nowhere is safe. They run again, borrowing a canal boat.
But is there no one they can trust? The media is hunting them now and
just when they think they have nowhere to go, they find allies in the
Free Cats League and discover they are not alone.
This is a truly
exciting thriller with lots of twists and turns. Kris and Jade are discovering
all kinds of resources they never knew they had to keep and protect
their cat. They are living in a vicious interfering New Labour kind
of Britain where social services and political correctness have destroyed
liberty completely. Can they reach the coast before the comprots catch
them? What exactly will they do to keep Feela safe, especially now she
Jade begins very
naive, Kris perhaps too smug, but together they learn much about themselves
and just what they are prepared to do to protect a defenceless animal.
The Last Free Cat is one of the best young adult adventures in
a long time. Be prepared to share. Everyone will want to read this.
© Sam North May 15th 2008
hackwriters at gmail.com
Sam is the editor
of Hackwriters and author of Another
Place to Die - the future of the next flu pandemic and his latest
Tide' has just been published June 2008
Knife of Never Letting Go
by Patrick Ness
Sam North Review
Imagine you are watching a film about the first settlers in America.
Pious, hardworking farmers carving something out of a raw landscape.
Notice there are no women, the men's clothes are rough and worn, understand
something terrible has happened that has killed all the women and left
just men and one boy and his dog.
all rights reserved - all comments are the writers' own responsibility
- no liability accepted by hackwriters.com or affiliates.