The Green Indian Problem by Jade Leaf Willetts
Set in the valleys of South Wales at the tail end of Thatcher’s Britain, The Green Indian Problem is the story of Green, a seven year-old with intelligence beyond his years – an ordinary boy with an extraordinary problem: everyone thinks he’s a girl.
Green sets out to try and solve the mystery of his identity, but other issues keep cropping up – God, Father Christmas, cancer – and one day his best friend goes missing, leaving a rift in the community and even more unanswered questions. Dealing with deep themes of friendship, identity, child abuse and grief, The Green Indian Problem is, at heart, an all-too-real story of a young boy trying to find out why he’s not like the other boys in his class.
Longlisted for the Bridport Prize (in the Peggy Chapman-Andrews category)
Every now and again a book come along and just leaves and indelible mark on you and even when you finish reading you cannot stop thinking about the book. The Green Indian Problem (Renard Press) by Jade Leaf Willetts is just that book. It was longlisted for the Bridport Prize but could quite easily pass you by. If you do get the chance buy a copy you will not be disappointed.
The story is set in South Wales, and it follows seven-year-old boy called Green, it is the time of Thatcher, albeit towards the end of Thatcher’s era as Prime Minister. It is a story has Green as the narrator, he is wise beyond his years, and he is inquisitive and is looking for answers to some questions in life. He is a boy you will take to your heart and cheer for. His parents are separated, and he does not get on with his mother’s boyfriend, Dennis. Home life is not at all good and there is clearly something not right here as you will read and Green, sets all this out in his diary that he writes as he finds it easier to set out what he sees everyday and the questions of his daily life at home and his school life and also about himself, he is a boy not a girl. But at times there is so much child like innocence and humour that you cannot help yourself being but love him even more.
But then one day his friend goes missing and this leaves Green looking for answers to questions beyond his years. I have to say that Jade Leaf Willetts has written something really quite special here and cries out to be read. The Green Indian Problem is just beautiful, tragic but warm and funny at times and I for one highly recommend reading.
My thanks to Renard Press for the review Copy of The Green Indian Problem by Jade Leaf Willetts. Published on 22nd March 2022 and is now available directly through Renard Press https://renardpress.com/books/the-green-indian-problem/ Also via Amazon and can be ordred through your local independent bookshop or through Bookshop.org that supports your local independent bookshop. UK Bookshop.org
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