Sea Change by debut author Sylvia Hehir was a pleasant surprise. A YA crime novel set somewhere in Scotland, it has an interesting – if somewhat idiotic and naïve – main character. Alex loves his mother, truants a lot, makes great jam, and isn’t all that good at knowing who’s a reliable friend, and who isn’t.
There is an untrustworthy, but charming, stranger in the village, and Alex doesn’t say no nearly as much as he ought to. Before long he and his best friend Daniel are in deep trouble. And the way trouble tends to escalate, here it does so in spades, and in the end Alex can’t keep juggling all those tasks he feels are his to look after.
Love comes into it, and there are many secrets and much mistrust. And when you are 16 or 17 you don’t share with ‘responsible’ adults, and what happens happens.
This book is a real page turner, and I’m glad I read it.
(If you are in Edinburgh, there is a launch at Blackwell’s tonight at 18.30.)