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Nick's gallery

Gill James,
PublishBritannica 2004
ISBN: 1-4137-2186-9 pp 149

Nick's Gallery book cover showing the old harbour

Nick's Gallery is a tribute to Nick, Barney's best friend, who has muscular dystrophy.

Nick is dying and the story is about how each of the main characters comes to terms with this possibility and how Barney deals with his grief. The two boys also shares a special secret.

Initially Barney has trouble accepting his friend's death. He is also trying to cope with the usual teenage problems ... he worries about his relationship with his first real girlfriend, and has difficulty juggling a part-time job, swimming trials and homework. This impacts on how he copes and things start to go wrong in a spectacular fashion.

"Then there is a strange shaped room, some ham and mustard sandwiches and a few conversations with a wise old sailor"

Eventually Barney comes up with the perfect way to remember Nick!

Nick's Gallery is written in an engaging style that is sensitive without being sentimental. Barney and Nick are easy characters to identify with. Their story, despite the sadness, is positive and celebrates life.

Gill James is a well known UK author of books and educational materials for secondary school children and wrote Nick's Gallery to help teenagers in a similar situation, who may also have lost someone close to them, to better understand their own feelings.

This book would be a great addition to school libraries and libraries specialising in disability information resources.

Available from bookstores and online from Amazon.com

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