Monday, 16 January 2012

Kill All Enemies - Melvin Burgess

Everyone says fourteen-year-old Billie is nothing but trouble. A fighter. A danger to her family and friends. But her care worker sees someone different.

Her classmate Rob is big, strong; he can take care of himself and his brother. But his violent stepdad sees someone to humiliate.
And Chris is struggling at school; he just doesn't want to be there. But his dad sees a useless no-hoper.

Billie, Rob and Chris each have a story to tell. But there are two sides to every story, and the question is ...who do you believe?

Kill All Enemies is a very thought provoking story and made me think a lot back to when I was their age.

My Secondary school was one of the worst in the town and often had kids that were refused in other schools due to behavioural problems and attitudes. The book helped me see into their side of the story and what may be contributing to how the act at school...possibly not something everyone would notice (my Psychology brain was going into over load reading this!) but I really believe this is a book many teachers should read as well as kids so that they can understand more why the kids are acting this way. 

Melvin Burgess has written other novels, and I loved Junk and found Kill All Enemies so different...but still just as brilliantly written! 

At first the novel took a while to get into because of all the different story lines, I was also trying to read quickly and find out more and more...which can be very detrimental and meant I often had to reread pages because I was in such a rush!! 

The question of "Who do you believe?" really made reading the book take so much longer because I kept stopping to sit and think which side was correct...was Billie correct in her way of thinking or was she actually the troublemaker that the social workers and police think she is? Part of her story made my heart break when she finally got to see her sister and brother again. 

It really is a book that makes you feel so much for the characters and you can't help but emphasise with them, but then something happens and Burgess gives you the choice of whether to continue emphasising with the kids, or side with the law and the social workers...which for me made the book more enjoyable and really made me want to read more and find the next step. 

I really advise this book, as it really makes you rethink how you look at kids with anti-social behaviour


  1. awesome review Steffi! Ive had this one on my wishlist for so long!!

  2. have you read one day - david nicholls? :)