Rose For The Anzac Boys: Jackie French
We are in World War I and 16-year-old Midge Macpherson is in a conservative ‘finishing school’ in England. As the war rages in the trenches, she feels increasingly helpless and useless. With two brothers fighting, she is soon desperate to do her bit. When her twin brother goes missing, the urge is irresistible, and with her friends decides to travel to France and face the carnage head-on. Jackie French is an amazingly prolific author, and one wonders how she found the time to do all the research she’s obviously done in order to write this book. The accumulation of details about the war and the period recreates a time and a world that are fully realised. Yet French keeps these details secondary to her characters and her story – this is no dry study. I found it very involving, wanting to know what was going to happen next to these inspiring people trying to survive such a devastating and world-changing event. Highly recommended for teenage to adult readers.