I tell anyone who’s unwary enough to stop and listen that this book is about me.  At least, I qualify, its heroine and I are roughly the same age and it’s almost set in Moray where I was that teenager in the 1980s!  The fishing industry and its future, which form part of the backdrop of this book, are concerns I recognise.

Saskia’s Journey by Carnegie Medal winner Theresa Breslin is a story of self-discovery, family secrets and a journey to the north east of Scotland now and then.  It’s set in a fishing community very like the one I group up in and depicts it very well.  Like Saskia, I was an outsider.  To belong in Lossiemouth means you and your family have lived there for generations.  Being an outsider wasn’t bad and didn’t mean I wasn’t accepted.  But I was set a little apart from the locals.  To be fair, so were the people from Hopeman six miles along the coast!

Theresa Breslin is a remarkable writer who never lets her research get in the way of telling a good story.  She uses all the knowledge she acquires without ever letting her readers see her hard work.  Her plots and characters unfold and develop naturally.  That is why I read her books.  With hindsight I see I have absorbed information and pondered situations but, as I read, only the story matters.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Saskia’s Journey is my favourite of Theresa’s books.  But I’d happily recommend any of them to you.

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