About the Book
He’s a household name . . . without a home
Jake is an actor, a household name thanks to his role on the UK’s most popular soap. But his character went upstairs to his bedroom six months ago and never came down again, and now Jake is facing an uncertain future. Add to that his dad’s anger issues, the family’s precarious finances and the demands of a severely autistic brother; Jake’s home feels like a powder keg waiting to explode. It’s easier to spend nights on friends’ sofas and futons, but what happens when you feel like a cuckoo in every nest?
Cuckoo is a novel about the roles we play when we don’t fit in anywhere, and finding unlikely solace when home is the least welcoming place of all.
Nominated for the Carnegie Medal
Shortlisted for the Hillingdon Teen Book of the Year 2017, the Hounslow Teen Read 2018 and the Ealing Teen Read 2018
‘This is absolutely unique and original and I’m in awe of it. It’s told in the format of transcripts of a youtube account, which posts dramatised autobiographical accounts of something which happened in the protagonist Jake’s past (but we aren’t told what happened – just that the Eastenders-style sitcom he acted on was shut down because of something he did.)
It’s told from his point of view, giving ‘his side of the story’ – so from the start, it’s obvious he’s an biased and unreliable narrator. To make it even more complicated, each transcript is followed by comments left on the videos by fans – and by the people portrayed in the episodes, defending themselves and giving their side of things.
It’s incredibly fun trying to keep track of Jake’s version of events (which might not be true) and the commenters’ versions of events (which might not be true too!). I felt like a detective -and at a few points I TOOK NOTES! I got really into it.
I’m not going to give anything else away about the plot – but if you’re looking for a fast read (I read it in about an hour) that will definitely challenge your brain, give this a go.’
Lauren James, author of The Next Together and The Last Beginning.
‘Quite unique…a well-written and gripping tale of teen fame, teen homelessness and isolation.’ The Bookbag.
With this multi-layered approach, David manages to inform us about homelessness, satirise the social-media airheads, dissect the purpose of soaps in society, explore the inner life of the mentally ill and learning disabled and, most of all, engage us in likeable Jake’s increasingly disastrous life, with a finale that is dramatic in every sense. Jewish Chronicle