The Fall
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The Fall

Tristan Bancks

In the middle of the night, Sam is woken by angry voices from the apartment above. He goes to the window to see what’s happening - only to hear a struggle, and see a body fall from the sixth-floor balcony. Pushed, Sam thinks. Sam goes to wake his father, Harry, a crime reporter, but Harry is gone. And when Sam goes downstairs, the body is gone, too. But someone has seen Sam, and knows what he’s witnessed. The next twenty-four hours could be his last.


Sam Garner doesn’t know why he does all the things he does to annoy his mum, but evidentally he pushed too far – and she finally caves and lets him go stay with his dad, Harry, a crime reporter Sam has idolised his whole life (but has never actually met).

While at his dad’s, Sam hears two men having an argument and witnesses one push the other off a sixth-floor balcony. Shortly after, while trying to take a photo of the murderer in accordance with Rule 1 of his father’s Ten Commandments of Crime Reporting (gather as many details as you can about the crime), Sam is spotted by the killer. Now there’s a murderer after him, his father has disappeared and he’s all alone.

The Fall is a tense and exciting thriller with a healthy dose of reality. It reads like a Jacqueline Wilson book, with a male protagonist, crossed with all of the coolest, gritty noir, crime novels you’ve ever read. It’s perfect for kids 10+ who love action.

Dani Solomon is a children’s and YA specialist at Readings Kids.

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