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Girltopia (Hilary Rogers, Scholastic)

Twelve-year-old Clara wakes up one day to a city where all the men and boys are afflicted by a mystery illness that leaves them unconscious and unresponsive but thankfully still alive. Clara has been facing a difficult time lately with her parents’ separation, but when the illness strikes, she sets out on a thrilling road trip in search of her father, who may have escaped the city before the illness spread. As the crisis unfolds, everyone must rally to uncover the source of this mystery and Clara will need the skills of all the women and girls in her community to save their city and the people they love. In Girltopia, Hilary Rogers has created a fast-paced, exciting novel with just the right balance of intrigue and personal journey. Clara’s physical and emotional development is sensitively portrayed, and Rogers deftly explores female coming-of-age issues amid the action of the story. More of a mystery adventure than true dystopian fiction, Girltopia will be of interest to educational specialists, librarians and booksellers with its exploration of gender issues links well, with the school curriculum. With a sequel to follow in 2019, this new series has the potential to generate a great deal of enthusiasm among readers aged 10 to 15.

Natalie Crawford is a freelance reviewer and children’s book specialist at Dymocks Claremont


Category: Junior newsletter Review list Reviews