The Gorgon in the Gully
by Melina Marchetta
I don't really read childrens books much - they just rarely appeal to me. I wouldn't have read this book if it weren't for the fact that it's written by Melina Marchetta (and the main character is the little brother of Jonah Griggs from her book Jellicoe Road).Summary: Beyond the basketball courts and classrooms of St Raph's is a gully where everything disappears forever. Danny Griggs has heard stories about a creature that lives down there. So why does he volunteer to face the Gorgon when he's been petrified of everything all his life?
As I said, childrens books don't really appeal to me so I'm probably not the best person to judge this one - but it was cute. It wasn't anything spectacular, it didn't come even remotely close to wow-ing me in the same way her other books do, none of it really stood out. It was purely a cute story, with nice characters. I did like that, even though they were children, she didn't overly dumb them down in that way that some writers seem to - they were realistic.
As a fan of Jellicoe Road, I did like the little appearances of Jonah and the few tiny things that link the story and Jellicoe Road together...if you're a big fan of that book, then you might like checking this out just for that reason, even if Jonah wasn't in it too much.
As far as the plot goes...I dunno, it was cute (I seem to be using that word a lot to describe this book but really, that's what my opinion of it boils down to: it was a cute book).
Personally, when I was a kid, I wasn't like the kids in the book - if someone dared me to do something, or said that a place was haunted or something, then I'd be the first to walk in (I had a lot of friends who were boys when I was younger, and even then, I was the one walking first into the woods and into the old farmhouse and the abandoned dog kennels). I wasn't the kind of kid that felt the need to plan it all out and put "scary" things off for ages, I'd just jump in head first . So, on that level, it was frustrating to read characters that were so...hesitant, that didn't have the same recklessness that I did when I was younger, but--well, without that aspect, there wouldn't have been a plot, so I get it.
I plan on giving the book to my nephew, I think he would enjoy it (more than I did anyway, he's definitely more like the kids in the book than I was...all about planning things out).
I don't have a rating for the book. If you know any young kids that like to read, they might like this one. If you're a Melina Marchetta/Jellicoe Road fan, you might enjoy it too. *shrugs*