Wonderful characters with a big issue woven through, Stuti Patel
Call me Madeleine
Kate S Richards
Green Room House
February 01, 2022
“Climate change is upon us, it seems…”
Call me Madeleine is a beautiful book written by Kate S Richards. Her novels are commonly based on adventure and serious topics.
Call me Madeleine is about climate change. Madeleine is a student who wants to make a difference while battling family drama and her romantic life. The story is set in the future, where there are driverless buses and electric cars. Her parents don’t understand her alarm about the burning planet but do support her ideas and plans for how she might help the environment.
However, her grandpa calls out her generation as lazy school dodgers who blame “Boomers” for the cause of global warming and climate change. After a heated argument with him during a visit to his town, she realises how different her thoughts for a seaside view are compared to her grandpa’s ideas. Madeleine is soon after sent to her grandparents’ house for the summer where she can’t see her petrol-head boyfriend Liam, nor her friends Mia and Tui, but does meet her childhood friend Christopher. Later on, she realises how wrong she is for accusing other generations when she should be taking action for the planet herself.
The author aims to inform others about how global warming can significantly impact places, but also tell the readers that even though it may not seem like we’re making a difference, the smallest things can mean a lot for the environment and ourselves.
The characters in this book are well-written and their emotions are well expressed. Christopher is one of my favourite characters; his thoughts towards life, how carefree his mindset is, how he inspires others, his religious thoughts – all these aspects make me relate to him but also influence me to become a better person. However, Freckles will always have my heart and be my number one favourite character.
This book may not be a page-turner, but it is definitely a must-read as it does have a shocking plot, “the betrayal is brutal,” but also some good morals along the way. I enjoyed the use of Māori words and am thankful for the glossary.
“A mixed-up world, where past and present merge into one…”
Even though the book’s setting is in the future, climate change is still a big issue in today’s world. I loved how the author linked the problem into her story; it really helped me understand and also to help spread awareness on the issue.
I disliked the ending and felt as though it was quite rushed and expected more, but otherwise, the book is wonderful. Overall Call me Madeleine is a 4/5 for me, and I would recommend it to anyone interested in cli-fi. It is also a fairly short story, which is good for reading over the weekend.
Richards grew up in Chase Valley and Regent Heights in South Africa. She is married and has two teenage children, dogs, cats and guinea pigs. Call me Madeleine is a novel filled with creativity and life-changing principles.
- Stuti Patel is 15 years old and lives in Hamilton