Since the death of his sister, Evie, Munro Maddux has been stuck. Flashbacks. Anger. Chest pains. A constant ache in his right hand. And a taunting voice he calls the Coyote. In an act of desperation, Munro heads off on a student exchange to Australia - the country of Evie's dreams.
Forced by his new school to join a volunteer program, Munro discovers the Coyote is silenced in one place - Fair Go, an assisted-living residence in Brisbane's west. Munro gets to know his team of residents- designer Bernie; sleeping refugee Shah; would-be wedded couple Blake and Dale; comic creator Iggy; and self-defence tutor Florence.
As this unlikely group shows Munro the sights, Munro's notion of what it means to be a big brother begins to change. But the burden Munro carries is not so easily cast aside. Will the Coyote triumph? Or can Munro find the fortitude necessary to mend his heart?
Australian born, Canadian resident, Darren Groth has written another beautifully heartfelt YA novel.
Munro Maddux moves to Australia on a six month exchange after the sudden death of his sister Evie, who had Down Syndrome.
He is having trouble coping, has anger management issues and is constantly taunted by ‘The Coyote’ - a voice in his head - about whether he could have done more to save Evie.
Needing to volunteer for something at his new school as part of their curriculum, Munro chooses Fair Go, a community facility that houses special needs teenagers. Munro is accepted by a group of five and he is starting to feel better. But Munro soon starts skipping school to spend more time at Fair Go, as his need to help intensifies.
Slowly but surely ‘The Coyote’ is disappearing, and Munro begins to get himself back into shape.
This was a wonderful insight into dealing a tragedy and guilt, and the process of letting go and moving on. This didn’t always seem possible, and Munro certainly faced many troubling experiences along the way.
But ultimately it is a story of hope, friendship and understanding. Poignant, incredibly well written with humour and an abundance of interesting and funny characters, teenagers 15 and older will love this book.
Reviewed by Rob