When Sadie is tumbled back in time to view a terrible crime, she is pulled into a strange mystery. Can Sadie, Walter and Lachie figure out a way to right old wrongs, or will they be condemned to repeat them?
Gr 4-6-Thirteen-year-old Sadie has been uprooted from friends in Melbourne and moved to the bleak country town of Boort. She is resentful of her mother's new job and renewed interest in an old boyfriend and the unwelcoming students at her new school. Her lonely explorations of the countryside lead her to a dried-up lake surrounded by nine strange boulders and a small graveyard guarded by a shrieking crow. It speaks to her of a long-ago crime that only she can help make right. With the crow's help, Sadie time travels several times to the 1930s when her great-grandfather was alive, taking on the role of his daughter. In the past, she witnesses an ugly confession and participates in the cover-up of a violent crime. In the present, she goes to Walter, a sullen Aboriginal boy and the nephew of her mum's romantic interest, for help. From Walter's wise Auntie Lily, she learns what she needs to do to make things right. By confronting her contemporary community, Sadie is able to atone for her grandfather's crime and secure the promise of a future free from earlier prejudices and violence. In this exciting mystery, Constable empathetically conveys the loneliness of the "new kid on the block" as well as that of the suspicious and tentative Aboriginal teen. Examples of racism in the past and in the contemporary world will be sadly familiar. American readers will enjoy the colorful Australian teen slang and gain an appreciation of Aboriginal culture.-Jackie Gropman, formerly at Fairfax County Public Library System, Fairfax, VA (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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Allen & Unwin
April 30, 2012
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