Orangeboy by Patrice Lawrence

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Sixteen-year-old Marlon has promised his widowed mum that he’ll be good, and nothing like his gang-leader brother Andre. It’s easy when you keep yourself to yourself, listening to your dead dad’s Earth, Wind and Fire albums and watching sci-fi. But everything changes when Marlon’s first date with the beautiful Sonya ends in tragedy; he becomes a hunted man and he has no idea why.

With his dad dead and his brother helpless, Marlon has little choice but to enter Andre’s old world of guns, knives and drug runs in order to uncover the truth and protect those close to him. It’s time to fight to be the last man standing.

How did I get the book? Received from publisher in exchange for an honest review

Genre: Contemporary / Mystery

Review: Orangeboy has become a book that I’ve found complex to review. Foremost I want to say this: ‘Orangeboy is gripping, intriguing and emotional. It’s an excellent mystery, with drama and a wonderful set of relationships for the reader to explore, both friendships and the family dynamics. Just go and read it now!’

Honestly I’d be quite happy do go and push this book at so many people with the above (and I’m still mad at myself for taking so long to read Orangeboy). Especially because I adore the two main female characters in this book so much, Tish and Marlon’s mother. At times I could have just shaken Marlon for not realising what these women were doing but that leads to spoilers and I most certainly don’t want to spoil anything about this book for anyone.

As I’ve said, Marlon’s story was a captivating read. It was also incredibly frustrating an eye-opening. It’s easy to say that I didn’t understand why Marlon made the choices he did. While reading I frequently thought; “why don’t you tell…” or “what about door 2” but the truth of the matter is that at Marlon’s age I would have been treated completely differently to him. It’s a sucky fact but it’s a fact.  Marlon’s world is very different to mine and reading Orangeboy gave me a much deeper understanding of this. While Marlon’s character at times frustrated me, the more I become involved in his life the more I appreciated why he chose the path he did.

Orangeboy pulled me through an emotional-ringer but for all the best reasons. This book and its characters will stay with me for a long time.

Recommend it?

Absolutely

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