“A whip-smart tale that asks big, bold questions of how we can save the planet.” Laura Lam
“A smart, brilliantly realized call to arms.” The Observer
“Frighteningly clever and richly imagined.” Laura Wood, author of A Sky Painted Gold
In a climate catastrophe ... resistance is taking root.
Gabrielle is a climate-change activist who shoots to fame when she becomes the first teenager to display a supernatural ability to grow plants from her skin. Hester is the millionaire daughter of an oil tycoon and the face of the family business. Theo comes from a long line of fishermen, but his parents are struggling to make ends meet.
On the face of it, the three have very little in common. Yet when Hester and Theo join Gabrielle and legions of other teenagers around the world in developing the strange new "Greenfingers" power, it becomes clear that to use their ability for good, they'll need to learn to work together.
As they navigate first love and family expectations, can the three teenagers pull off the ultimate heist and bring about a green rising?
PRAISE FOR GREEN RISING
“Smart and sharp and witty and fun.” Stephanie Burgis, author of The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart
“Creatively confronts the doomsday narrative so often associated with climate change and offers hope through the message that young people can work together to find solutions.” The School Librarian
“Inventive, gripping, and ultimately hopeful… [A] fantastic tale bursting with a diverse range of intrepid teenagers, coming-of-age themes.” BookTrust
“Effortlessly mixes magic and science with strong, likeable characters and a smart plot.” Hannah Gold, author of The Last Bear
Lauren James is the twice Carnegie-nominated author of The Reckless Afterlife of Harriet Stoker, The Quiet at the End of the World, The Loneliest Girl in the Universe and The Next Together series. She has been shortlisted for the YA Book Prize and the STEAM Children's Book Award. Lauren teaches creative writing for Coventry University, WriteMentor and Writing West Midlands, and has written articles for numerous publications, including the Guardian and the Children’s Writers' and Artists' Yearbook. She is the founder of the Climate Fiction Writers League, and a passionate advocate of STEM further education. She lives in the West Midlands and you can find her on Twitter at @Lauren_E_James or her website http://www.laurenejames.co.uk
This is an extremely relevant novel for today’s society, where students are protesting for better climate policies across the globe. It discusses how fear can be both paralysing and motivating, and issues of morality in whether the outcome outweighs the means. The story switches between perspectives of the main characters who I felt were pretty realistic and relatable. There is great LGBTQIA+ representation, with Gabrielle being aroace (aromantic and asexual), and other nonbinary and queer characters featured. Theo talks about his shame around being dyslexic, but also the ways he’s found to overcome difficulties and thrive. I really liked how it showed these things as just elements of identity and not a whole personality, with characters having struggles and aspirations unrelated to them. A call to arms, Green Rising by Lauren James is an exciting and empowering YA novel that is a must-read for any young activist.
The story is well paced, moving between the two main characters seamlessly. Ideal for readers of other dystopian stories where teenagers are impacted by some environmental or viral factor, and develop powers, such as The Darkest Minds series by Alexandra Bracken.
In this epic tale of love, friendship, family and adolescence, many important themes weave together to create a novel that is confronting but also engaging. The general message the book communicates resonates with the next generation, as the current climate situation escalates. Readers are forced to ask themselves the question; “How can we save our earth without the help of greenfingers?” which is topical considering the issues young people face today. The novel was extremely entertaining with the change in media throughout the book (such as the social media posts and the ‘Taylor Swan’ lyrics) providing humour and offering different perspectives on the book’s serious matters. Green Rising was a CBCA Qld Branch 2023 Readers cup book for the Year 9/10 category, so it’s recommended for ages 14 and above.