Catherine Bruton's YA novel, I Predict A Riot, takes the infamous London riots of 2011 as its starting theme.
Fabulous dialogue, an energetic pace and a myriad of diverse characters whose paths intertwine make I Predict A Riot a great book to sink in to.
Maggie is an amateur film maker. She likes to observe, she needs an outlet. Her politician mother is just too perfect, but only when the cameras are rolling ... home is slightly less than perfect.
Tokes is the kind hearted guy who's emerged from a troubled back ground. He and his mother are doing everything in their power to keep him out of trouble, to keep him away from distractions ... sometimes it's not that easy.
Then there's Pea, a complicated and intriguing character. He's caught up with the wrong crowd, but somewhere in there is the desire to get out. Escape. Read this for the fascinating story behind his creation.
Maggie is the one who leads the narrative with the ominous opening line ...
'It's been a year since everything happened, but I still have bad dreams.'
Echoing her protagonist's fascination with filming, Bruton uses a compelling cinematic approach - scenes not chapters, an element of detachment. Through Maggie's narrative she leads us through the twists and turns of an explosive summer.
At the beginning of the summer Maggie films something she shouldn't have. That makes her a target. Tokes has an instinctive desire to do the right thing ... and unwillingly gets sucked into the drama that unfolds. Pea's role is pivotal in all of this. He's on the other side, but ...
As the riots in London explode Bruton captures the intensity and insanity with incredible vividness. Our main characters are swept up in dramatic moments, with just seconds to make life changing decisions. If I say any more, I'll be spoiling it for you!
This is a novel that stays with you long after you've absorbed the final lines. Powerful, energetic and incredibly thoughtful, I Predict A Riot is a stand out YA novel from 2014 so far for me.