Little Bang by Kelly McCaughrain – Book Review

Little Bang by Kelly McCaughrain – Book Review

Little Bang by Kelly McCaughrain

Little Bang

I received a free copy of this book.
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Beneath the New Year’s Eve fireworks, shy science-nerd Mel and slacker songwriter Sid get pregnant on their first date. Any sixteen-year-olds would expect trouble – but this is Northern Ireland 2018, where abortion is still illegal. Mel’s religious parents insist she must keep the baby, whilst Sid’s feminist mum pushes for a termination.

Mel and Sid are determined to do this together, but they soon discover that pregnancy is totally different for boys and girls. When their relationship starts to fall apart under all the pressure, Mel finds herself feeling alone with the impossible dilemma of the Little Bang growing inside her.

Review by Stacey

Little Bang is the story of teenage opposites Mel and Sid. Mel comes from a strict religious family. She works hard at school and wants to make something of her life. Sid is the naughty kid who doesn’t see the point of school, his mother is quite absent in the sense she wants to live her own life and seems to regret ever having a child.

Mel and Sid though like one another and arrange to meet on New Year’s Eve when they hope to have an amazing night together celebrating in the new year, however, things go a little too far and now Mel is carrying Sid’s baby.

Set in Belfast, Northern Ireland, 2018 where abortion is illegal, this is the story of two sixteen-year-olds whose lives, and those of their families have been turned upside down for a few moments of passion. The book isn’t written in a judgy, don’t make this mistake kids kind of way, it has been written to show the true scale of how easily lives can be changed quickly.

Little Bangs is touching, heart-warming, and brave. It is written in dual POV which I normally detest but this felt like it had to be written this way to get inside both teenager’s heads. There are lots of ups and downs and emotional scenes set amongst some amusing ones. I loved this book and I think it is a book that is needed in every high school.

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Kelly McCaughrain

Kelly McCaughrain

Kelly McCaughrain’s first YA novel, Flying Tips for Flightless Birds won the CBI Book of the Year and NI Book Award and was nominated for the Carnegie Medal. She was the QUB Children’s Writing Fellow 2019-21.

When not writing, she enjoys the adrenaline rush of driving an extremely old and unreliable VW campervan around countries where she can’t say ‘fan belt’ in the local language, but her favourite pastime is running a Fighting Words creative writing club for teen writers who constantly inspire her and put her teenage self to shame with their brilliance.

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