Jasper Jones - Craig Silvey I've read this for my school English class novel study and I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked it. You know me, Aussie writers are my favourite, but the genre and the whole 'small town, murder' plot doesn't usually sit great with me. But. Craig Silvey is a genius (plus, he's only 28 years old!) and the awards and acolades are very prestigious.

Okay, so how do you build a community in 1960's rural town WA? Easy. You make it full of awful people, racism, murder and just a couple of kids who manage to outshine any other characters I've read recently.
Charlie, Eliza, Jefferey, and Jasper are phenomenal. They're smart and learn so much about themselves and the world they live in a short period of time. Charlie learns the most and - wait, wanna hear a word I learned that English teacher love? Bildungroman. Jasper Jones is a bildungroman, which basically means it's a book about personal growth and character education.
Anyway, our plot is thick with great characters, a multitude of 'sit on the edge of your chair, biting your fingernails' scenes and a nod to To Kill A Mockingbird. Which I love. I can see the parallels without me being like, 'COPYCAT!!!'
Personally, I squeed over Eliza and Charlie. The young love shown in this novel is sweet and honest without me wanting to gag myself. By reading the last sentence you'd think it was a romance book. But I personally believe the romance is to a) help with Chaarlie's growth and b) enhance the plot.
Either way, I have to write an essay on Jasper Jones and I''m looking forward to it. Great book.