White Night – Ellie Marney (15+)

I read the blurb for this book and was super excited to start it. However, within the first few pages I honestly started to struggle with some of the language and terminology that Ellie Marney has chosen to use. Nevertheless, I persisted to see how it would progress and I’m so glad that I did.

Bo is your typical 16 year old country boy. He plays sports, helps his parents out at home, and is popular enough at school. Then Rory starts at school. She lives at the local commune and is very different to the other girls. Bo is the only one at school who gives her a chance. As long held family secrets are revealed, Bo feels like his life is falling apart and the only person he feels he can confide in is Rory. But is there more to her off-the-grid commune than it appears?

“White Night” is a fantastic look at the meaning of family, friends, trust and love. There are strong environmental themes that run through the book and it actually really made me think, which I think is always a sign of a good book!

One of the things I really appreciated about this book is the relationship between Bo and Rory. Bo respects Rory and never takes advantage of her. These types of relationships are definitely under represented in literature and the more we can show young people that having a respectful partner is possible, the more we will see of it in reality.

I would have scored “White Night” higher if it weren’t for a few turns of phrases that really irked me. I also ponder if this will make it difficult to access outside the Australian market.

Ellie has presented us with a great novel that has beautifully in-depth characters, a unique setting and a great plot. Ellie Marney is certainly an Australian author to watch. I look forward to her next endeavour.

– Danielle