Friday, 14 October 2011

Singing it by Anne Cottringer

This wonderful story is about a girl with a strange name called Flower Power who is seeking to find her place and her voice in the world. It was first published in 2007 and it does not contain vampires, zombies, spies or has an gritty urban vibe but like its central character it has a quiet and intense narrative and a poetic soul.
Flower is constantly on the move as her feckless parents flit from place to place. Her parents are still deeply in love with each other and behave like soppy adolescents. Flower does have other ambitions than to be noticed by her parents. She wants to save tigers from extinction and has set up her own website. She also wants to become a singer because ‘your voice is part of you. It’s like your mind and body all mixed into this sound that goes out into the world.’
She meets Mick an old flowerseller who introduces her (and the readers) to the music of Billie Holliday, Nina Simone and Janis Joplin and encourages her to sing and write her own songs. She also befriends Cat and Liam at school and finds an oak tree where she can escape to write and sing her own songs.
The book contains ‘boy crushes’, fall outs with friends and a music competition but Flower has to deal with the heartbreak of losing Mick. This is not a story about a girl winning an X factor competition it is about someone discovering ‘the power that I have to connect to the world through music.’
This story would make a fabulous e book with links to the music that inspires Flower.
As I reread the book I find myself thinking about Amy Winehouse and the power she had to connect with an audience. I would love to know how Flower negotiates the music business.
By Lynda Waterhouse
Singing it published by Anderson press ISBN978-1-84270-678-7

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