Exhilarating and informed !
I was fortunate enough to attend the Dorset Reading Conference, where David Gilman gave a couple of highly entertaining writing workshops. Apart from being a charismatic character, his modest descriptions of his frankly exciting and courageous life to date leave one not just weak with laughter but aghast at the adventure he lived through as a young adult - bring on the autobiography. However, he is already an accomplished writer, for radio and television in the UK. As the mother of teenagers - and I work teaching children to read - I am always looking for the more sophisticated meaningful texts that some demand these days.
I have given up trying my boys and girls with the sort of books and authors I read in the 70’s. Literacy levels have increased and the world has changed, and in my experience, many are not as ‘mature’ as we were. Writers like David Gilman ... and others, do seem to be bridging the gap perfectly.
The classics are not always the way forward with reluctant readers, and why should they be? This is hardly an easy read. Writers in this century need to embrace - just as Mr Gilman has - all the new goals and ideals that face the next generation with an awareness that the roles of girls and boys are now much more equal and the lines are blurred.
A modern writer for the demanding teenagers of today who brings all his own daring as well as sensitivity for the planet into this ripping yarn!