Today is my stop on the blog tour for An Unusual Boy by Fiona Higgins. Many thanks to Fiona, and Boldwood Books, for providing me with a copy of the book, and to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me to take part in the tour.
Meet Jackson – a very unusual boy in a world that prefers ‘normal’…
Julia Curtis is a busy mother of three, with a husband often away for work, an ever-present mother-in-law, a career, and a house that needs doing up. Her fourteen-year-old daughter, Milla, has fallen in love for the first time, and her youngest, Ruby, is a nine-year-old fashionista who can out-negotiate anyone.
But Julia’s eleven-year-old son, Jackson, is different. Different to his sisters. Different to his classmates. In fact, Jackson is different from everyone. And bringing up a child who is different isn’t always easy.
Then, one Monday morning, Jackson follows his new friend Digby into the school toilets. What happens inside changes everything; not only for Jackson, but for every member of his family. Julia faces the fight of her life to save her unusual boy from a world set up for ‘normal’.
An extraordinary boy. The mother who loves him. The fight of their lives.
Bestselling novelist Fiona Higgins returns with a heart-stopping, devastating, but ultimately uplifting story about loyalty, love and forgiveness.
An Unusual Boy is a deeply moving book that touches you on so many levels. Within a few pages, my heart went out to the whole family but especially Jules and Jackson struggling to cope with a father who is absent most of the time and doesn’t seem to even try to understand Jackson when he is home. As you get to know each member of the family and see how they cope with the hand they have been dealt, each of them finds their own place in your heart, although personally I became particularly attached to Milla, who is grown up beyond her years.
There are multiple moments throughout the book that felt like I had been punched in the stomach, such was the depth of the hurt the characters endured, but there are just as many moments of pure joy that counteract the pain.
The chapters told from Jackson’s perspective provide a wonderful insight into how life appears to a neuro diverse child, and I loved that Fiona Higgins chose to include this point of view rather than just showing things from the perspective of a mother of a child like Jackson.
An Unusual Boy is a challenging read about trust, betrayal and a mother’s love for her children. It isn’t always comfortable reading, but it is a book that will stay with me for some time and one I would thoroughly recommend you read.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Fiona Higgins is the Australian writer of several bestselling contemporary novels including The Mothers’ Group and Wife on the Run. Her work has been widely reviewed, translated internationally, and described as ‘page-turning domestic melodrama for the social media age’. She lives with her family in Sydney and her first book for Boldwood will be published in October 2020.
Make sure you visit the other blogs taking part in the tour to read more about this great book.