Thursday, June 11, 2015
REVIEW: Jessica's Ghost by Andrew Norriss
I absolutely adored Jessica's Ghost. It is a wonderful story about friendship and embracing our differences and it explores some very heavy topics such as depression and suicide with a very light and gentle touch. This book is adorable but also very important. The only thing I really knew about this book beforehand is that this book features a ghost, called Jessica. But it's also so much more than that.
Jessica's Ghost is for a middle grade audience but it's one of those books that can be enjoyed by people of any age. It starts off with Francis, this isolated boy who has no friends and doesn't seem to fit in anywhere. He's sitting on a bench at school and a girl sits next to him, Jessica. And that's where this incredible story starts. With Francis and Jessica becoming friends. And they both mean a huge deal to each other because with Jessica Francis can be himself and share his passion without fear of judgement and Jessica is thrilled that somebody can see her at long last.
Together Francis and Jessica meet other people who feel like they live on the outside of normality. Either because of their appearance or interests or behaviour. And though they are all different they realise that they have things in common, even if it just that they can all see Jessica. And I loved the heartwarming overall message of being different is okay.
What I love the most about this book is that from the start this book was always just a great story with great writing and then it becomes something larger than itself and I love the way in which the darker elements to this story are introduced. I think it's wonderful to see a book aimed at a younger audience that deals so wonderfully with topics such as suicide and depression and what to do if you a) feel like this or b) know somebody who does.
Jessica's Ghost is a beautiful story with a wonderful message and deserves to be very widely read.