The Weight of Water

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​This profoundly beautiful novel by Irish author Sarah Crossan subtly but powerfully challenges all kinds of preconceptions – from the line that is supposed to divide poetry from prose, to young people’s authentic experiences of immigration, bullying, inter-generational conflict, romance and sexual attraction. Although a clear narrative thread runs through the whole book, each chapter can be read as a discrete piece of poetry, enabling the reader to make especially deep connections with whichever aspects of the story most strongly resonate with his or her personal circumstances and/or feelings. As well as being a great YA read, the strength of the story and the original way in which it is presented are such that it has the potential to inspire all kinds of classroom activities – and indeed, the author has produced a thoughtful teachers’ guide to accompany the text, including pre-reading activities, discussion questions, and suggestions for making links across the curriculum.