The Very Dangerous Sisters of Indigo McCloud
Writing a dystopian world that is laugh-out-loud funny is no mean feat, but to create such an environment for young readers is nothing short of extraordinary. John Hearne manages this with deftness in The Very Dangerous Sisters of Indigo McCloud. Indigo finds himself the unwilling hero of the tale, battling against his formidably vindictive sisters as they terrorise the town of Blunt and monopolise income from door-to-door calendar sales. His quest to stop them from harming dissenters is dramatic, absurd, and absolutely compelling.
Key to Hearne’s success is the elaborate world he constructs in the town of Blunt. Populated by factories grim and grimy, it serves as a repulsive and intriguing backdrop for the unfolding narrative. The author has allowed their imagination to run riot in building his world, replete with its own strange customs (they celebrate Ingratitude Day each year with an Insult Tournament, Most Irritating Toddler and Ugly Baby Competition, and Blandest Cake and Most Unappealing Bunch of Parsnips contest). This detailed rendering serves as an enriched backdrop to the plotline, and will draw young readers in with its bizarre and hilarious atmosphere.
The Very Dangerous Sisters of Indigo McCloud will come to young readers with freshness and wild humour, stretching their ideas about how farfetched fiction can be, while delivering a story vivid in characterisation and a message of quiet courage in the face of bullying and belligerent people. Highly recommended.