An intense and mysterious story about friendships, football and the paranormal, Siena O’Dowd
May 23, 2022
Adele Broadbent’s Between starts by introducing you to a young boy called Olly and his friends Egg and Loon. Olly loves to play football and is into the paranormal. His friends are into football too but the paranormal, not so much. In this first chapter, we are also introduced to Martha Mischefski, a spiritualist who lives in an old house at the end of the street and pushes trollies through the streets. Olly is curious about this old lady but when his annoying aunty tells him to keep away from her and his mum starts crying every time she finds out he’s so much as seen her, it only intrigues him more.
Olly has an interesting relationship with his mum. She is still quite upset about the death of his dad and avoids all conversation around him. This is hard for Olly because he has questions but doesn’t want to stress his mum out, which is understandable but troubling for Olly. I feel sorry for him because I can’t imagine how hard it would be knowing you had a dad but not being allowed to know anything about him.
Football is a great outlet for Olly and his passion for it is described really well. It made me think of my hobbies and reflect on how important it is for young people to have healthy hobbies with good friends, to get out of the house and to pursue your passions particularly if there is a lot going on at home.
After every chapter I finished, there was something that made me want to read on. I wanted to find out more about mad Martha and why Olly wasn’t allowed to go near her. Between leads you on a wild adventure, constantly making you wonder what will happen next. It’s exciting, emotional, and quite relatable for kids my age as it goes into his school life quite a bit. I enjoy reading about when he’s with his friends Egg and Loon they’re always up to something, whether it be scheming their next attack on Regan (their enemy) or just chatting about footy. Egg is hilarious and witty, always making jokes about something. Loon isn’t as smart or funny as Egg but is equally fun to read about. Anyone would be lucky to have friends like them.
Between delves quite heavily into paranormal activity so if you’re into palm reading, fortune telling, reading minds and speaking to spirits then this book is for you. If not, then I’d avoid it. I loved reading about the relationships and connections between the characters, particularly the friendships. I’m not really interested in paranormal activities but was able to appreciate those bits for the sake of the story.
All in all, Between was quite an intense book to read. It was intriguing, mysterious and pretty ominous at times. I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone under 10 or for anyone who doesn’t want to read about paranormal activity. Other than that, it was a great story and I loved reading about Olly’s adventures and mishaps.
- Siena is 13 years old and lives in Waikuku.