Book review essay: Listen to the Dark by Maeve Henry

Title: Listen to the dark

Author: Maeve Henry

Information about the author: Maeve Henry is born in Ireland. Maeve lives in Oxford with her husband and her two children. The first book that she wrote was ‘The witch king’ in 1987. All her books are much loved but Listen to the dark is the most popular one. This book has won the ‘Smarties’ Award.

This information is from: http://users.ox.ac.uk/~worc0337/authors/maeve.henry.html

How was the book received by critics and readers? There are not much opinions from people that have read the book. But the opinions that I found were very positive. But everybody said: That it was a powerful book. With all kinds of issues and with bullying, grief, friendship and honesty with just a hint of haunting ‘magic’. What they also said was that the book was rightly an Award winner.

This information is from: http://www.amazon.com/Listen-Dark-Maeve-Henry/dp/0749747048

Pages: 227

Description of the characters: Mark Robson is the main character from the book. He is a loner. Bullied at school, suffocated at home. He doesn’t fit anywhere. His parent’s don’t give him any attention. He is a smart boy and plays very good trumpet. Mark is also very curious

Mother: His mother is a very nice woman. She cares about Mark but also she becomes fast mad. His mother isn’t describe deeply in the book

Father: His father is a quietly man. And he is very emotional but he don’t want to show that. He is also a very sad man that loves to drink Whisky

Mr Potter: This man is the teacher of Mark. He gives music lessons. He believes in Mark. According to Potter has Mark talent

Extra information about the characters is from: http://www.scholieren.com/boekverslag/49974

Plot: The book is about a boy that is very curious. By his curiousness he knows something, a secret about his sister. His parents don’t want to let him know about it, so they kept it a secret.

Theme(s): The theme of the book is secrets.

Structure: The book is classified in chapters. The book has twelve chapters.

Setting: They live in England. They don’t give you very much information about the places where they live or come. School, at home and in the park are the most important settings.

Characters and chacteristics:

Mark is a sensitive and smart boy. He doesn’t have any friends, only Tim. His parents don’t give him any attention. Mr Potter is the man that believes in Mark. Mark follows music lessons from Mr Potter

His Parents are caring about Mark. They love him so much but after the accident with his sister they are changed

Mr Potter is the man that gives Mark self-confidence. Mr Potter pays attention to Mark. Mr Potter is a friendly man that cares about people. And want to help them with their problems.

Extra information about the characters is from: http://www.scholieren.com/boekverslag/49974

Initial incident: There is something happened in the park

Rising action: On the window is written: Lucy

Climax: He ask his grandmother about Lucy

Falling action: His parents are very angry. He has a lot of quarrel with his parents

Resolution: He has seen his sister.

Norms and values: The norms and values in the book are: ”Be honest to everybody, don’t lie to someone.” His parents don’t want to tell Mark about his sister Lucy, also they weren’t attending to say it someday. But by Marks curiousness he finds out the secret from the past. So be honest and tell the secret because (like Mark) they will find out the secret someday.

Emotions of the character: The main characters emotions are often the same. He doesn’t fit anywhere. He doesn’t get attention from his parents; his father is only drinking Whisky and goes to work. So he is a loner, he feels alone. Also he is bullied at school and doesn’t want to go to school anymore. Where he become happy from is reading, learning and playing on his trumpet.

My opinion: The book was very nice. It’s well written and has an original topic. The first chapters I read I thought it was a book about a very often bullied boy. But then, after the first three chapters, it was about a secret from the past. So it is not a predictable book. That is why I liked, and many others, the book so much. It’s a book about secrets, mysteries, things from the past and unknown things. In the book Mark is solving a mystery that his parents want keep it secret from him. It all starts in the park. And it ends with a secret that Mark solved. The biggest attraction of the book is that the book begins with a rising action and ends with a resolution. The secret isn’t solved in one chapter but in the whole book. That makes the book never boring.

Is this book suitable for H4 students? I think that this book is suitable for a H4 student because it is an interesting book. The book is about a boy, Mark, that is very curious. He finds a secret from the past. So the book is very exciting. The book was full of questions and mysteries. The book was easily to read, they often use difficult words. But the book has a difficult storyline; you must read well to understand the story.

Source: Essay UK - http://xbmm43.com/essays/english-literature/book-review-essay-listen-to-the-dark-by-maeve-henry/


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