Monday, May 14, 2018

Long awaited new book from Tina Shaw

Make a Hard Fist by Tina Shaw, OneTree House

Sixteen-year-old Lizzie is getting anonymous letters. Lizzie Q, I love U reads the first one. Not threatening, but Lizzie is uneasy. It’s not her friends being stupid, so who is it? And why does she feel as if she’s being watched, particularly in the park down the road? Lizzie tries to get on with her life, doing her long-distance running and working in the local library. And then … Lizzie is attacked by a man in the park. Fortunately a dog-walker comes along in time to stop the vicious attack.

On the surface, Lizzie recovers. But inside she thinks, not safe, not safe anywhere. Life goes on, ordinary things happen. But another anonymous letter comes. Lizzie’s problems are nowhere near being over.

A teacher at school organises self-defence lessons for Lizzie and some other girls. The trainer is a young Polynesian guy, a street fighter with a troubled past. Lizzie grows to trust him and his mantra for self-defence, make a hard fist. Is it enough to help Lizzie survive when her stalker has another go?

This is a very real and credible story with a heroine many teenage girls will relate to. The tension stays tight all the way, and although we know Lizzie will be attacked again (and will be able to defend herself this time) we still want to follow Lizzie to her eventual success. The theme of learning to protect one’s self is a very important one, so I’m happy to recommend this for secondary school libraries.

ISBN 978 0 47339 706 7

RRP $20.00 Pb

Reviewed by Lorraine Orman

See 'Make a Hard Fist' teaching Resource in Teacher Notes

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