Author – Laurence Anholt
Age – 13+
When Pip is bought and paid for at an orphanage, he is worried for his future. But the worn, skinny old man called Mr Zachary who ‘adopts’ him seems kind enough on the long drive back to his farm, as he explains what he wants Pip to do. Since Pip was the only boy who could read at the orphanage, he was the perfect candidate to read to Zachary’s bed-ridden wife Lillybelle.
Pip is shocked when he meets her but they soon build a positive relationship as he covers her every need and reads from his copy of Great Expectations – a gift from his mother before his parents died in a car accident.
There is another young teen at the farm. Beautiful, mute Hannah – an American Indian, who Pip thinks is the most beautiful girl he’s ever seen.
But life on Dead River Farm isn’t all sweet. The Zachary’s have a son called Erwin – an angry, Negro-hating, Vietnam vet and also a leader of the local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan. His parents warn Pip to stay out of his way and Pip does just that, at least until the day Erwin finally catches him…..
This story is told in two viewpoints – Pip’s story (in 3rd person), and the Zachary’s neighbour Jack Morrow (in 1st person). Jack is a university professor from Ireland and an excellent hypnotist. He’s been watching the goings on next door with increasing worry. Can he help?
Let Mr Morrow hypnotise you with this story, and see how Pip, Hannah and the Zachary’s cope with the evil of the Ku Klux Klan.
Brilliantly written. Absolutely loved it. A bit ‘Mocking Bird’ a bit ‘Shawshank’ – Love, Hope, Friendship and Prejudice – a great piece of story ‘hypnotism.’