White Rabbit Red Wolf was very good and also such a wild ride your entire mind is going to get whiplash.
I did go in thinking this was a contemporary about an anxious mathematician. And it is. But it’s also a twisty spy-conspiracy thriller with a little bit of Xmen thrown in at some corners and so much math. Peter is literally trying to find the formula that will calculate his anxiety so he can understand why he’s always so scared. The kid counts in square roots to calm down!!
Sometimes if I try to do maths, my eyeballs bleed. I actually stayed playing music for such a long time because you really only have to count up to four. I don’t even count page numbers of books, ok, I let Goodreads do that for me.
So I really admired the math and (will confess) I got totally lost several times. I don’t think that is a problem for the enjoyment, but THERE’S MATH, OK PEOPLES. FAIR WARNING.
It’s such a mind bendy book!
One minute you’re reading about Peter, who lives with his twin sister and super intelligent scientist mother, and then the next — GUNS. BLOOD. KIDNAPPINGS. ATTEMPTED MURDER. REAL MURDER. RUNNING FOR YOUR LIFE. CONSPIRACIES. DOUBLE-CROSSING-AGENTS. ANXIETY.
Confusion? I know it. Sometimes it was all I knew ha ha ha…ahem. But honestly the wildness really captivated me too! I wasn’t actually expecting this kind of book, but I was thrilled and addicted and trying desperately to work out the good vs badies. Who is who?! Or is everyone morally grey?!
It’s best not to go in with TOO much knowledge of the plot! But basically Peter’s scientist mother is shot and kidnapped and he and his twin are being rounded up by the British super secret intelligence. For their “own safety”. His twin sister has vanished though…and seriously who the heckkkk do they trust.
The whole book screws with Peter’s head — aka it screws with ours. And by the end?! I have so. many. questions. Open ending, hi, just hit me why don’t you.
Peter is the kind of narrator you fall in love with: total gangly, anxious, super genius and dork.
Peter is an Anxious Wreck On Two Legs™. He has a panic disorder (he’s not autistic) and an eating disorder (which I believe is #ownvoices rep from the author note). He’s a genius but bullied, and he’s always being beaten up and faking he’s not smart in class just to survive. His twin sister, Bel, absolutely DESTROYS anyone who touches him and I love that kind of relationship.
- There are so many epic intelligent women in this book!!
- Also Peter’s best-friend is a girl with OCD
- Peter is very self-depreciating about his issues and adorably funny
- ALSO DON’T TRUST ANYONE EVER
- really heartfelt and good mental health rep
- I don’t think it encourages cures or “fixes” (apart from wanting to just cope better with life)
- SPY CONSPIRACY MIND TWISTY PLOT
- maths, more than 2+2 actually
- a really adorkable character you want to protect
- epic sibling relationships
- lies lies lies lies lies
- actual hilarious lines that will make you bust up laughing
- British setting
- being on the run and screaming into the void about it
- basically imagine someone REALLY UNPREPARED to cope with their adventure? Meet Peter Blankman, ok. This poor kid.
I’d definitely recommend this for anyone who loves their minds twisted and to have a REALLY wild ride. It’s a bit improbable and sometimes confusing, but it has deeply flawed and loveable characters. It cares about diversity. And it’s FUNNY.
THANK YOU TO WALKER BOOKS FOR THE REVIEW-COPY. White Rabbit Red Wolf by Tom Pollock was published July 2018.
Peter Blankman is afraid of everything and must confront unimaginable terror when his mother is attacked.
Seventeen-year-old Peter Blankman is a maths prodigy. He also suffers from severe panic attacks. Afraid of everything, he finds solace in the orderly and logical world of mathematics and in the love of his family: his scientist mum and his tough twin sister Bel, as well as Ingrid, his only friend.
However, when his mother is found stabbed before an award ceremony and his sister is nowhere to be found, Pete is dragged into a world of espionage and violence where state and family secrets intertwine. Armed only with his extraordinary analytical skills, Peter may just discover that his biggest weakness is his greatest strength.