Author: Danielle Weiler
Age Group: Young Adult
Release Date: 1st March 2014
Publishers: Ranga Books
Rating: 4 stars
Available from: Amazon
"I need a place, just for me, a place to escape, a place to just be. If I could create an assembly of shapes on endless pages…I do believe my life would be complete."
Chas lives in a town where kids just want to get wasted, where one party melts into the next and they don't think about life beyond school. Unless you’re one of the lucky rich kids, of course.
Chas’s I-don't-give-a-rats persona doesn’t match his secret: he loves drawing. He sketches the girls he sleeps with; all but Kira, though not from lack of trying. Worse, the guys abide by a code, and Chas wants to break the most important rule.
He’s desperate for a way out. A future that doesn't involve juvi or abusive stepfathers or friends who blame him. All he has to do is figure out how.
Having read Danielle's two previous books, I jumped at the chance to read Assembly of Shapes. I loved the idea of reading a male protagonist, written by a female. It's always interesting to see how well the author can convey the character.
Chas is a teenager who has no direction in life and feels like the world is against him. Without the encouragement of adults or any decent role models, you can't help but feel for Chas and his situation. He starts out as an angry young man and I loved seeing how his character evolved throughout the novel. Of course he makes mistakes and at one moment I'd want to curse him and the next cry for him. He doesn't have a great relationship with his mother and the only constant male role model is his uncle. He feels alone and isolated and as the story progresses you begin to realise how much Chas is willing to change. With the encouragement of his principal he finally begins to see that it can be different, but that you do have to work for it. Weiler does a spectacular job, immersing you in Chas's world and his mind.
Assembly of Shapes is a novel about a boy who is slowly becoming a man and that time in your life where you're no longer a child and not quite and adult. It's about understanding the consequences of your actions, and realising that some relationships will end but new ones will begin. Weiler has an innate ability to delve into the minds of teenagers to produce a gripping, emotional read, about life, love and growing up.