Tom Brennan - Given by Teacher

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Related text for The Story of Tom Brennan

Curriculum Link: Into the World-Module C
Themes in this unit of work: Growing up, life’s journey, transition, change, catalysts Developing relationships: family, friends, intimate

Themes explored in the novel ‘The Story of Tom Brennan’: * Responsibility
* Dealing with consequences
* Fear
* Drink driving and its effect on families and communities * Family relationships
* Dealing with crisis
* Friendship
* Understanding and empathy
* Self esteem
Summary
Contemporary youth themes of excessive drinking, drink driving, lack of responsibility and family fragmentation are addressed in this compellingly suspenseful book. When Tom Brennan's brother, Daniel, drink drives and is involved in a car accident, their cousin is paralysed and two people die. Daniel is convicted and gaoled, and the Brennans are forced to leave town. Tom and his sister have to adjust to a new life. His mother remains in bed, his father struggles with their new situation and the debt of his paralysed nephew. There are no easy answers as Tom and his family search and work towards solutions. This fast paced, multilayered story avoids confusing realism with pessimism, and while very dark at some points, demonstrates hope for the present and future.

Summary
Contemporary youth themes of excessive drinking, drink driving, lack of responsibility and family fragmentation are addressed in this compellingly suspenseful book. When Tom Brennan's brother, Daniel, drink drives and is involved in a car accident, their cousin is paralysed and two people die. Daniel is convicted and gaoled, and the Brennans are forced to leave town. Tom and his sister have to adjust to a new life. His mother remains in bed, his father struggles with their new situation and the debt of his paralysed nephew. There are no easy answers as Tom and his family search and work towards solutions. This fast paced, multilayered story avoids confusing realism with pessimism, and while very dark at some points, demonstrates hope for the present and future.

The resources listed below have been selected as possible related texts for the novel ‘The Story of Tom Brennan’. To find additional books use some of the themes raised in this novel and add ‘fiction’ or ‘stories’. Other subject headings you may be able to use include: Coming of age – Fiction Bereavement – Fiction Grief – Fiction Personal development – Fiction

Books
Almond, David Jackdaw summer F/ALM Every summer Liam and Max roam the wild countryside of Northumberland - but this year things are different. One hot summer's day a jackdaw leads the two boys into an ancient farm house where they find a baby, wrapped in a blanket, with a scribbled note pinned to it. And so begins Jackdaw Summer. A summer when friendships are tested. A summer when lines between good and bad are blurred. A summer that Liam will never forget. Bateson, Catherine Painted love letters F/BAT Art and alternative lifestyles feature in this first person narrative of a family dealing with terminal illness. Chrissie's dad, Dave, is dying of cancer and she cannot talk about this except to the reader. Dave deals with death by painting his own coffin with a love letter to his wife. When Nan arrives, stark adult dialogue skilfully reveals past family conflict and the ways and means to reconciliation. The novel cleverly reveals a family living through trauma as they deal with death in different ways. Realistic, contrasting characters learn how the trivia of life obstructs true and uninhibited love. Issues include rural versus city lifestyles; church going; change; hopes and dreams; and coming to terms with death. Condon, Bill Dare devils F/CON Jack Watson has led a safe,...
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