About Me

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Victoria, Australia
I am an author of Young Adult Fiction books. I worked as a teacher in the Pacific Islands for seven years. Whilst in the Solomon Islands I taught PSSC English before the ethnic tension in 2000 forced a change of plans. I love Pacific literature, art and music. You can find me on Facebook at Beth Montgomery Author.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Island Girl by Lolo Houbein

Island Girl is a story for teens set on an island off the South Australian coast. Written by author Lolo Houbein, the text has an odd style which often omits the subjects of sentences. This gives the prose a brooding effect but it also makes some of the reading clunky and awkward sounding in your head. I also had the feeling that the teenage voice hadn't been adequately captured. I have no idea how old the author is but many of the expressions used in the protagonist's internal dialogue are those of a "baby boomer" or even older.
Island Girl
(Hybrid Publishers, 2009)
   As for the plot, well... not much happens except the protagonist Bianka makes a decision about what to do with her life. There is a romance of sorts, but that's a long way into the book and if the start doesn't hook you, then you're unlikely to persevere. Most of the story centres around Bianka's indecision and the inner turmoil she feels at not knowing what to do with her life now she has left school. It is a source of conflict for sure, but quite a tame one. Plenty of paragraphs are taken up with planning meals and gardens and unless teens are interested in self-sufficiency tips, I really don't feel there is a lot to engage them.  
   If you are after a slow, introspective read then you may enjoy Island Girl. However if you are after a story with a strong plot and plenty of action then you may as well look elsewhere.

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