The Week at World’s End
Carroll’s book is a riveting adventure set against the backdrop of the Cold War. Taking place during the Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962, the story unfolds in a quiet part of England. As fears over a nuclear war between Russia and the US mount, Stevie stumbles across a dead body in her garden shed – the most exciting thing that’s ever happened to her!
When she brings her best friend Ray over to investigate, they discover the body is very much alive, and very much in need of their help. The young girl says she’s being chased by people trying to poison her, and she needs to collect something in secret before she can make her escape.
Carroll details the complex social and political feelings of the time in an accessible way for readers. She captures the beauty and power of friendship, the excitement of shared secrets, and the constant thrill of wondering what will happen next. The message of the book is an inspiring one: in the wake of events beyond our control, we must focus on what we can do in order to make a difference. The greatest tool we can utilise is our own voice and speaking up is often the most courageous thing a person can do.
There are significant portrayals of terminal illness, death, war, and racial injustice throughout, but these topics are handled in a considered manner. A great fiction story with a historical background for some learning along the way!