Out of This Place. By Emma Cameron. 3 CDs. 3:19 hrs. Brilliance Audio. 2013. ISBN 978-1-4692-7497-3. $54.97.
Gr 9 Up–Three friends who want to leave high school and move on describe their anguish in Cameron’s novel written in verse (Candlewick, 2013). Luke, who tries to stay out of trouble at school, spends his time playing cricket, works at the local supermarket, and hangs out at the beach. While trying to figure out where he fits in, he applies for a scholarship and traineeship to get out of school. Bongo spends his time getting wasted to block the memories of his younger brother, Dylan, who was placed in a foster home due to their alcoholic and abusive stepdad and drug addict mother. He’s tired of being around addicts and misses his sibling, so he runs away from home. Casey has a very controlling father, and she’s not allowed to participate in any school activities or have a job. She wants to get away and have some freedom, so she leaves home without saying goodbye. Desperate to leave their lives behind, they all choose to get “out of this place.” They learn lessons along the way and go in directions they never imagined. The story is told from alternating points of view by narrators Candice Moll, Leonardo Nam, and David Atlas. Their expert Australian accents capture the emotions of the three Aussie teens desperately wanting to live life on their own terms.–Janet Weber, TigardPublic Library,OR