When I started blogging, I met Dianne Gray from Australia and fell in love with her writing, both her blog and her books. I read every book she wrote. Links to other reviews are at the end.
Soul’s Child, the 2012 YWO award-winning spell-binder by Dianne Gray, unearthed and explored a love/hate relationship between co-dependent father and daughter. After the accident in which Aurora Jones’ mother and younger sister died, Aurora stayed in a coma for three weeks.
The accident gave Aurora an urge and ability to draw unnaturally realistic scenes she had never experienced. Although she hid her drawings, her father discovered them and realized their meaning. He began to capitalize on them. Mervin legally changed his name to Clive Soul, and created a Hollywood TV show, Soul Search, to “prove the reality of precognition, ghosts, and demons.” When she realized what he did, Aurora lost trust in her father. She learned he would do anything to take possession of her drawings.
Throughout the book, Aurora sought true friendship. She struggled to find someone she could really trust in an increasingly hostile environment. As her father became more and more dependent on them, she feared for both hers and her father’s life. The webs between the pictures and real life became dangerously entangled.
Since this book is recommended for young adults, I usually connect book reviews to the Common Core and sometimes the History-Social Science Standards for California. For example, asking seventh-grade students to work with standard RL 6. Analyze how an author develops and contrasts the points of view of different characters or narrators in a text. Grappling with this story will help students deeply understand the intricacies of complex relationships.
I highly recommend this book for mature young readers who are well past the age of nightmares.