Saturday, August 28, 2010
title: Mama's Trippin'
author: Katy Watson-Kell
first: 2006 by Fremantle Press published
Von leaves the life he knows in fremantle and travels to New Zealand to meet the mother who left when he was 6 and his new baby sister. he feels at a lost end in WA, fighting with her girlfriend, isn't doing so well at school, not sure what he cares about or what he wants anymore and isn't feeling right with his mates. his dad's heading off to the station with his mates for a week, so when Von's mum rings out of the blue and invites him to come stay he jumps on the chance. when he gets to Wellington he realises in an instant things aren't as magical as his mum, Charlene, made out. her boyfriend's running from the cops, she's working all might as a dancer at a nightclub and then their is Stella, his silent sister. it isn't long until things so from slightly hectic to crazy. soon people are turning up dead. Von travels to the place of his Moriori ancestors and they reach out to help him. at this point is he able to trust a culture he's felt no connection to before now. does Von have any choice?
i quite enjoyed this book, it's easy to read and flows really well. their have been other books about sons who find their mothers and have their lives turned upside down, but this one was different. i think the main difference was that it was told from lots of different perspectives. even though this book is written entirely in third person it's always easy to tell who's point of view it is from and if you can't tell you can look at the symbol at the start of the chapter. it was very int resting to get the mother's view of her long, lost son as well as his of her.
i also liked how realistic the relationships in Mama's Trippin are. instead of hating or suddenly loving each other, Von and his mother slowly and clumsily get to know each other. how stella, the 2 year old sister, and Von get along is also right on the mark, at first Von hasn't a clue what to do, but it isn't long before they are inseparable. how henry, the neighbour from down stairs, weaves his way into their lives was quite funny. it's nice to find an authour who remembers that young guys tend to think with what's in their pants not what makes sense.
this book also had a very good ending. not everything was resolved, but we had a feeling things would work themselves out over the next few months.
i felt this book left a few things unexplaned. Von is a diabetic and we get the feeling right from the beggining that he isn't comfortable with it, but that is never explored. we also hear nothing about his mates except his girlfriend Juice. all we know about his guy friends is that they play footy. i think that if i read Katy Watson-Kell's other book, Juice, that both of these things would be in that story.
a bit of background knowledge about the Moriori people could help understand this book a bit better becuase this book really shines when it comes to spiritual and cultural ideas. i plan on finding out more becuase it was the connection with Von's ancestors that made the ending so special.
sorry for the long review. it's a good book and i will deffinetly be trying to get my hands of Juice, which is also about Von.