Thursday, 19 February 2015

Nona and Me

If you are looking for a smart and intelligent teenage novel, then 'Nona and Me' by Clare Atkins may be the book for you!

Rosie is a white teenager who lives with her mother on an Aboriginal community.
As a child, she was best friends with Nona, an Aboriginal girl, and they were brought up as sisters or 'yapas' due to strong family connections.

But Rosie hasn't seen Nona in years and is now ensconsed with her best friends Selena and Anya and is developing a relationship with Selena's brother. Selena is bright and bitchy and peer group pressure is well evident as the girls go 'fridging' (stealing alcohol) before a party. Rosie is uncomfortable but goes along. It is also evident that Selena has little time for Rosie's Aboriginal friends and connections and Selena could easily write her off.

'Nona and Me' is set in the era of the Northern Territory intervention in 2007, when the Australian Government sought fit to send in the Army to bring about an overhaul in Aboriginal health and education.
Was this action good or bad? Positive or negative? Nothing is simple and there are differing and complex ways of looking at these issues. Many Aboriginal people were terrified and felt that the intervention would bring about another era of the Stolen Generation.
In many respects Rosie lives in two different worlds. Can she find a path through for herself?

Strong and capable writing that gives the reader an insight into race relations, peer pressure and modern communities.

-Ann

 
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