It has been a while since a new children's fiction book has won my heart so completely. Wonder by R J Palacio may have been the last.
But here we have The Cloud Hunters by Alex Shearer to warm the cockles of your heart.
Full of beautiful, philosophical language, almost poetic at times and memorable characters.
"It seems in life that for every plus there is a minus, and that freedom itself doesn't come free. For that too, there's a price to pay."
"Why is it that your parents are forever urging you to be careful? As if beinf reckless, getting yourself killed, or ending up in hospital are all you have in mind? Do they imagine that you have no other plans than to do yourself an injury as quickly as you can? And even if you were careless by nature, did telling anyone to be careful ever make them so?"
"It seems, that for all our faults, we still have an inner yearning to wish each other well. I think we want the best for each other, despite it all. We want each other's journeys to be safe and successful. If only out of superstition. Because then our journeys will be successful too."
"A few minutes later, a sky-shark came along, heading in the same direction, as if in leisurely and confident pursuit, sure that it would get its prey before the day was out. The sky-ray was a dead fish flying."
My only concern is that sometimes the action takes a while to get going as Christien does like to spend quite a bit of time reflecting on life!
The Cloud Hunters live in a future world where the Earth has been destroyed. Old shards of earth float around the old earth's core. Water is scarce; the cloud hunters job is find clouds, harvest the water and sell it to those in need.
But The Cloud Hunters is so much more than a futuristic story with an environmental message. This is a story about relationships, life and death and the choices we make along the way.
Highly recommended for mature 11+ readers.