There have been some impressive debut novels this year. Judges for the next Branford Boase Award should have no trouble arriving at a strong shortlist. One book likely to be in contention is this highly atmospheric story about the relationship between a boy and a semi-vagrant war veteran called Webster.
This was Julia Eccleshare’s pre-release summary on LoveReading4Kids:
A poignant debut novel, The Dark Inside is the touching story of a thirteen year old coming to terms with the death of his mother as well as an exciting, mysterious and dramatic adventure. When James finds a man covered in terrible wounds living in the ruined house that he runs to in order to escape his step father, he begins an complicated journey in which the real readily becomes magical and the supernatural is never far away. The lessons James learns about change are thought provoking.
I particularly liked the way the book posed philosophical questions along the way. The author read Theology at Cambridge.