'It was too late to move. He'd almost reached her. It was like that moment that's supposed to happen just before you die, when everything comes rushing back, your life flashing before you.
Only this wasn't her whole life, just the worst part.' The music pulses, lights flash and raised voices echo in Hannah's head.
Her parents are away and her impromptu house-party has got completely out-of-hand.
But when Hannah wakes up the next morning with her head throbbing and the house wrecked, she realises these are the least of her problems.
From the fallout of the party emerges an accusation of rape that tears friends apart, divides opinion and shatters lives.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 240 pages
- Publisher: Andersen Press Ltd
- Publication Date: 06/01/2011
- Category: General
- ISBN: 9781842709948
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Review by greenbreak
Fallout is a very interesting book. It is a story about Hannah, a fifteen year old, who is left at home after her parents go away for the weekend. At first it seems that it is a typical scenario of a teenager inviting a few friends over, then text messaging leads to a small party escalating into a huge out of control event. As the story unfolds, many other large issues come into play. Such as, lessons to be learnt from binge drinking and the associated dangerous consequences, including loss of memory and the ability to make wise decisions. The issue of how well you know your child, her friends and peer group. and of parents not adequately preparing their children for the consequences of what can go wrong in todays’ society and consequently not giving children strategies to deal with this situation. The party does indeed get out of control, things get wrecked, objects get stolen, drugs are passed around and there is a claim of rape. This is an important book for all teenagers and their parents to read. Hannah makes a claim of rape against an ex-boyfriend who genuinely believes he did nothing wrong. So many mistakes are made and a number of very harsh lessons are learnt. Important themes are explored such as the destructive force of the spreading of lies and malicious gossip, the insidious power social networking can play in destroying lives, and when a female says no she should be taken seriously. Whilst there are no gory details or violence, this accusation has serious and far reaching implications, friendships are questioned, loyalties examined. However, in some ways it brings to light the naivety of some of the main characters, adults and teenagers, which almost make certain themes to be a little unbelievable, especially with a book written in 2011. How could the parents not be aware of the power of mobile phones and texting in terms of teenagers creating parties when adults are absent? Why didn’t Hannah’s parents take precautions and think of what could happen? If they were not close to their daughter, why would they trust her three friends she was having over? I can’t think of a parent I know that would ever leave their fifteen year old in those circumstance, at home with three friends, no adult, on a Saturday night. For the most part it is a really suspenseful read, as each chapter reveals various strategic clues and you are left guessing who Hannah is accusing of the rape until well into the book. It is carefully written with each chapter focusing on either Hannah, Shane or Zac which offers the reader richly drawn and complex characters. It is worth noting there is a degree of swearing and references to drugs and alcohol. For this reason I would recommend it suitable to mature readers from 15yrs and up.