This stunning début novel from Australian author Emma Cameron is perfect for the YA audience. Cinnamon Rain didn’t take me long to read as I couldn’t put it down! Intriguing, heartfelt and eloquently written, I loved it.
Beautifully told in verse which achieves the effect of minimalism, of making each line, each word, count. This sits so well with the portrayal of teenagers because life isn’t always analysed and discussed in minute detail – I think adults are more prone to that – life happens, things happen. You make decisions, move on, deal cope with it. Luke, Bongo and Casey all have to do that.
Friends for such a long time. Each reaching a time in their lives where things need to change, for different reasons. Bongo lives with his alcoholic stepdad, avoiding the beatings, trying to find his little brother who was taken in to care due to the drug addictions of his mother. He is close to Casey but she has her own problems – acutely aware that she arrived in this world too early for her parents, on a day to day basis she deals with both the resentment and stifling control from her dad. Luke is direction-less, needs to find purpose and meaning not involving Casey.
Cinnamon Rain is neatly divided in to three sections forming a narration for each character with some over lap as the friends make their way through key moments in their lives. Succinct chapters, each barely making two pages, ensure the progression is swift and dynamic whilst simultaneously creating a poignant tone.
I loved getting to know these three characters, sharing their joys and awkwardness from preparing for the formal to Casey’s confident development.