From the moment Ben Chapman ('Hoodie' to the other Shady Boys) crashes out of school, determined never to return and, incidentally, seeking his revenge on the school's drug dealer by stealing and concealing his stash in his trousers on the way out, you know that this is a boy to whom caution and reticence are alien concepts.
Outwardly, he maintains that all he wants is a job, his own money and to follow his heart towards the girl of his dreams, Isabelle. But, underneath that concealing hoodie, Ben has a rich inner life, fed by dope, wine and the belief that he is someone special.
During his 'summer of love', we follow his attempts to engage with the real world with frustration and compassion. His adventures cause him to question today's competitive, consumer-based values, eventually challenging his perception of reality and prompting him to reflect upon who and what his purpose in life is before finding himself faced with the definitive test of resolve and bravery.
Hoodie provides the perfect antidote to alarmist reporting of youth issues by exploring the problems facing modern day Britain from the perspective of the disempowered, disaffected teenager.
‘Wow! What a read! This is a superb book with everything thrown in the melting pot! Romance, drugs, crime, teenage angst and social commentary are cleverly interwoven to produce a superb book.’ Self Publishing Magazine
‘...a top novel...’ Paddington and Westminster Times
‘…clockwork orange with a twist…would make a good film…’ John F.
‘…a compelling dialogue and impressive depth of character development…a slightly surreal rites-of-passage…I particularly enjoyed the boys’ relationships with the girls, which felt suitably confused and hormonal.’ H. Davis, Freelance Script Reader
‘Brendon Lancaster’s first novel is written well and I found myself feeling for the characters. Everyone will be able to relate to some aspect of the flawed personalities. But it must be noted that my favorite part to this novel was the last chapter -Can You See Me, where the author incorporates a personal poem. I found it poignantly emotional and authentic as well as an original concept to arrange an entire chapter that way as well as provide a clear and perfect ending to the story. I give this novel four out of five HOTS’ Ami Blackwelder, Hot Gossip, Hot Reviews
‘This is a great book and very well-written. The reader will want to it read in one sitting; I found it very difficult to put down. This is not a book for someone who wants fantasy and froth; in contrast it is brutal, gritty and honest. Hoodie is a book for and about today’s generation. It tells of dreams, consequences and coming of age. Hoodie is not a particularly likeable character, but his vulnerability in the fact of the harsh reality of life is endearing. We will all find something of the protagonist in ourselves, and while that may horrify some of us, if we are honest, we have experienced some of what Hoodie has too’ Self Publishing Magazine
A fantastic book. Read it!
This was a great and worthwhile read.. This would be a great film, Brendon take note. Looking forward to the next one, well done