Today I’m going to be talking about the beautiful Swan Boy by the wonderful Nikki Sheehan which is not released until 5th May 2016.
I received a copy of Swan Boy via Rocktheboat (I also got a freaky awesome bookmark too!) in exchange for an honest review. And I can assure you this is an fantastic book! I gave it 5/5 Stars on goodreads.
Firstly, here is a look at this gorgeous cover.
From the cover I imagined the story to have something to do with Swans, a boy and London from the red bus.
I was not wrong.
Swan Boy is about a boy called Johnny who has recently moved from his home with his younger brother and mum after his dad sadly died unexpectedly.
Normally a book with a young child in can be a bit… put off-ish. But Sheehan captured the essence of what being a kid is- pretending to be anything you want! Drawing on tables, being told its your bedtime (when really its like 5 hours away). I adored Mojo (his brother) so so much!!
But anyway, the book begins when Johnny is being bullied by his schools bully Liam when suddenly a Swan comes to his rescue. Now Johnny is a boy whose recently had to support his mum, look after his brother, move schools and do his schoolwork. But rarely in books do things go to plan. And after being humiliated by Johnny and the Swan, Liam is out for revenge. Calling Johnny “Swan Boy” is just the start of many events from an incident in the library to ballet with the big bully himself, Liam!
This book has sparked so many emotions in me, particularly when it comes to child bereavement. Now for me, growing up I’ve only had a mum (and a pretty fab nana would was just the most amazing woman of all time) but I never had a dad. So I can really see how Mojo and Johnny would struggle without having a figure in their life they should always have had. It’s terrifying and sad that suddenly these key things in life that you should have with your dad are no longer going to happen. Sheehan dealt with this topic exceptionally. Particularly how Johnny told Mojo that their dad wasn’t ever coming home was told in such a way that children could understand but not in a abrupt or harsh way. It was delicate and well-written.
So was the dragon ride! When I have kids I’ll tell them the tubes are multi-coloured dragons. Such a unique way to get a kid on a tube and so much fun too!
Back to the Swan.
After Johnny joins the school ballet production (of which he is given the lead), he starts to become more and more confident, makes friends with Stefan another boy who is bullied by Liam. But then the feathers start sprouting out of his chest, totally feathers normal really.
But the question I’m gonna leave you all with is…(because you should buy the book cause letting me tell you the answer is lazzzzzy)
Will he prevail over the bullies and will he find his place in society?