Friday, July 28, 2017
Zeustian Logic by Sabrina Malcolm
I remember the uproar when one of New Zealand's well known climbers, Mark Ingles, climbed Mt Everest and in doing so walked past a man who was dying. Many said he should have called off his expedition and helped the man. It was in the media for quite some time. There were people who were on the side of stopping and others who thought that anyone who climbs Everest should take the consequences. In the case of Mark he was barely making it himself, he needed help to climb with his two prosthetic legs. He'd invested a lot of money, training and effort. On their way back down from the summit they stopped to help the British climber but he died soon after. Sabrina must have been quite young when this happened but obviously it struck a chord with her and she used some of it for her story 'Zeustian Logic'.
In Zeustian Logic, the main protagonist's father was famous for climbing the highest mountains in the world until his last one. They found his client in the snow dead and his father nowhere to be found. As well as dealing with his father's death Tuttle has to come to terms with the negative media attention. He wants to prove his father did the right thing and in doing so help his family recover from the shock of his father's death.
I highly recommend this novel for 9-12 year olds. It's a coming of age story of a boy dealing with his fears and moving on into the next phase of his life. It's beautifully written and I hope we see more of Sabrina Malcolm's writing.
This is Sabrina Malcolm's first novel but not her first published book. Sabrina has illustrated a number of books including Flora of New Zealand Volume 5 Grasses by E. Edgar and H.E. Connor (Manaaki Whenua Press, 1999), Skeletons by Jane Buxton (Learning Media, 2000) and Koro's Medicine by Melanie Drewery (Huia, 2004). Koro's Medicine was a finalist in the New Zealand Post Book Awards for Children and Young Adults, and was also listed as a 2005 Storylines Notable Picture Book. Sabrina’s illustrations have appeared in the School Journal. In 2013 she wrote and illustrated Blue Moon Bird and she also drew the covers for the Flytrap Snap series, written by Johanna Knox.