By Reid Duncan Carmichael
VANCOUVER — There’s an obvious draw to fantasy for young people. Something about the world building, the magic, or the characters are compelling enough to young readers that they can offer a gateway to literature in general. Books like Harry Potter and The Hunger Games create worlds and issues that, while very much based in fiction, resonate with readers; books like the latter even go so far as to mirror contemporary issues. Jack Cloud, a novel by Adam Deane, will aim to do the same: create an interesting world with monsters and a young, independent character, but will focus on the issue of sustainability. It sounds like a book with a lot to say.
Taking place some time in the future, the book will begin a trilogy and introduce the reader to a universe where mankind’s excessive consumption has finally brought about the end of the world. Believing that humanity should have a second chance to thrive, the titular character’s grandfather sends a small group of colonists to another world in another galaxy in the hope that they will learn from their predecessors and make a home elsewhere.
Do we deserve a second chance though? That question would appear to be a key component in the story and it’s an issue Deane has had to ask in his personal life. “That theme’s always been present in my life,” Deane says. “I had a very abusive past and so second chances have always been very important to me. I’ve always believed that people can redeem themselves and so in this book, that theme’s very strong throughout the entire thing. Jack, the main character, is very much me as a kid but he’s also very much me as a 28-year-old. I believe in forgiving. I feel like humans change so much throughout their life that it’s difficult not to.”
That dichotomy of a story told by a 28-year-old about a character who emulates his younger self, Deane says, comes in part from a love for the story of Peter Pan and Wendy. “James Barrie was always my favourite author and the fact that he had created this child who never grew up, who was from a world called Neverland, that always amazed me because I wanted to keep the magic that I tried to find constantly when I was a kid.” He went on to say that he would use Jack to show the reader that journey and desire to keep the magic alive.
You can pick up Jack Cloud by Adam Deane on October 31st or any day after that as long as it hasn’t sold out.
Jack Cloud is available at various stockists and at jack-cloud.com.Adam Deane, BC, books, British Columbia, Jack Cloud