Breaker by Anne Marie Allan
AN ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTERAN UNDERSEA ADVENTURE Tom and Beth are not happy when they move to North Berwick in Scotland and find themselves facing a rainy, windswept beach, a house that’s falling to pieces and a school full of strangers. But when an oil tanker crashes into the Bass Rock, the small seaside town is shaken to its core and Tom and Beth suddenly find themselves in a race to rescue the local sea life and save their new community from environmental catastrophe…Tom and Beth must save the Firth of Forth from environmental disaster in this timely underwater adventure with community activism at its heart.
Book Review by Tanya Kaanta for Love Books Group
Breaker is a fun middle-grade novel featuring adventure with an environmental twist. Twins, Tom and Beth, move to the coastal town of North Berwick, Scotland, just before school is about to end. Not an optimal time to move for any pre-teen. But they decide to make the most of their predicament, especially when they meet Professor MacBlain. He’s eccentric and a bit odd, to be sure. Yet he welcomes the twins with open arms. Especially when they show interest in his inventions designed to help preserve the marine life.
However, Professor MacBlain is not the most popular man in town. Though his life’s work centers on preserving the environment, and he’s a founding member, he’s excluded from the town’s organization, POP, People Opposing Pollution. Moreover, Tom and Beth soon learn there are people after the professor. Men in suits and a woman with a large hat.
Soon, the children embark on a fantastical adventure with the professor, in the hopes of saving their town from an environmental catastrophe, while helping the professor escape capture.
While the actual believability of a professor asking for the assistance of two children not quite teens is unlikely, the story is still a fun slice of adventure for kids to imagine. Moreover, there’s a good deal of information about the ocean and the environment, which bonus for parents, makes the story a bit educational in addition to entertaining.
The story doesn’t contain anyone too nefarious, so parents who are concerned about dark characters need not fear. And there’s a good lesson on communication as well. One I believe we all can learn from.
All in all, Breaker is a great read for kids 7-13ish. Especially those who are interested in the environment or might be more inclined toward advocacy work. The ending is happy and the lessons, even for me, have ruminated in my brain well after reading the story.
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