Growing up is hard enough without a deadline. Alex has a story to tell. He just doesn't know what kind of story it is yet. He's got a lot of the concerns every 12-year-old has but lately, ever since his brain surgery, everyone in his life is behaving more than a little mysteriously. He's certain there's something rotten at the heart of his parents' marriage, and when his beloved hamster Jaws 2 starts acting up as well he decides it's time to investigate. So begins the journey that will take him to the limits of his understanding and take you back to the wonder and conviction of your own adolescence, to a time when you understood the world so much better than it understood you.
Closing date: 04/07/2018
We have asked a select number of members and browsers to review Ostrich. You can read their reviews below.
William Alexander - 'Ostrich is poignant, endearing and comedic. It’s a mixture of despair and light-heartedness concocted so well that you can’t help but fall in love with Matt Greene’s first novel.' Click here to read the full review.
Daisy Pennock - 'The beautiful, amazing story of a boy battling with cancer. One of the best coming-of-age stories I have ever read.' Click here to read the full review.
Jade Craddock - 'Quirky, witty, poignant and profound this book is a gem and firmly places Matt Greene on the literary map.' Click here to read the full review.
Sam Sabbarton-Wright - 'Ostrich is a delight! A funny, light-hearted and yet moving insight into Alex’s life as he struggles with growing up, the effects of a brain tumour and the strange behaviour of those around him.' Click here to read the full review.
Barbara Middlemast-Neal - 'Matt Greene has written a classic here - easily of the quality of Mark Haddon's "Curious Incident..." etc; it's an intelligent crossover book which will be appreciated by teenagers and - perhaps - even more so by adults. Brilliant.' Click here to read the full review.
Lesley Hart - 'Ostrich, tells the story of 12 year Alex, who is on the cusp of his teenage years. Alex is unwell, but recognising that a person is more than the sum of their symptoms and we get to know Alex.' Click here to read the full review.
Rachel Bradley - 'I enjoyed 'Ostrich' by Matt Greene. One of the main reasons why is because of the way that on nearly every page is a fact that you probably didn't know that manages to fit into the text - mixing two different genres together.' Click here to read the full review.
Sarah Harper - 'Taking you on a roller-coaster of emotion, Ostrich is witty, insightful, poignant, funny and terribly sad...An outstanding debut which you must read.' Click here to read the full review.
Phylippa Smithson - 'This was one of the most addictive, page-turner and engaging books I have ever read.' Click here to read the full review.
Victoria Halliday - 'It's Alex's narrative voice - unique, engaging and funny - that is one of the best parts of this book and is the key to making this such an unforgettable read.' Click here to read the full review.
Sarah Bedwell - 'A great summer read that definitely makes you laugh whilst tugging at the heartstrings. It has you looking at the world with fresh eyes.' Click here to read the full review.
Rebecca Jayne Barrett - 'It was a pure and beautiful novel with everything you'll need to make you laugh, cry and leave you with memories of how whimsical this twelve-year-old boy was, and how wonderful his story really was.' Click here to read the full review.
Safiyah Afghan - 'Ostrich is a well written, mesmerising and thoroughly enjoyable coming of age book...Sentimental and moving, witty and humorous, Ostrich is perfect for all readers.' Click here to read the full review.
Janette Skinner - 'Fantastic, original, funny tale of a boy Alex. He narrates a short window in his life with wit and wisdom. He is serious about grammar and his hamster. You will laugh and maybe also break your heart.' Click here to read the full review.
Robin Little - 'A charming & engaging novel written from the perspective of a teenage boy with a brain tumor. Not a handbook for those dealing with ill teenagers but it does give an understanding of the difficulties.' Click here to read the full review.
Megan Olwen Williams - 'Greene’s novel is unassuming yet brilliant, heart-warming and yet tragic, and constructed with such skill that at times I was left in awe.' Click here to read the full review.
Zarina de Ruiter - 'A coming-of-age story reminiscent of The Fault In Our Stars and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.' Click here to read the full review.
Nicola Crisp - 'This book is an entertaining insight into the mind of a 12-year old boy...an interesting and amusing exploration of the relationship between a child and his parents in that awkward stage approaching teenager-hood.' Click here to read the full review.
Elisabeth Thomas - 'Alex is 12 years old. After suffering from seizures, he under goes brain surgery to try to stop them but on his release from hospital, nothing seems to be quite right.' Click here to read the full review.
Linda Hill - 'Matt Green knows exactly what it is like to be a boy stuck between childhood and adulthood and he also knows exactly how to convey that world to any reader.' Click here to read the full review.
Michelle Hemmingway - 'What the author did so well was to write a really uplifting book about adolescence but one that is at the same time quite sad and moving.' Click here to read the full review.
Hannah Glenton - 'Overall this book was disappointing; it didn't live up to the books (such as The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time) that it had been likened to.' Click here to read the full review.
Nicola Foster - 'Unfortunately, I was actually unable to finish this book and it left me feeling pretty disappointed...I’m sure a lot of people out there will love it, but regrettably I wasn’t one of them. Click here to read the full review.
Other praise for Ostrich.
'Alex is a memorable narrator with a unique perspective on life and this is a highly engaging and funny coming-of-age story that becomes all the more poignant as we begin to wonder how much coming-of-age Alex is going to get' The Bookseller
'Ostrich has given me the most enjoyable reading experience I've had all year and has one of the funniest and most engaging young narrators I've had the pleasure of reading. Matt Greene is seriously funny and in Ostrich proves comedy can be the finest of arts' -- Matt Haig, author of The Radleys and The Humans
'Irresistible! Ostrich is loaded with wit, charm and wisdom. Alex is one of the sweetest and most inspiring narrators I've ever encountered. I dare you not to laugh, cry and fall utterly in love' -- Maria Semple, author of Where'd You Go, Bernadette
'One of the bravest novels I've read in a very long time. Greene lets the reader become detective and clue by clue we uncover not only the truth of Alex's world, but the deepest truths of what it means to love and lose' -- Carol Rifka Brunt, author of Tell the Wolves I'm Home
'Alex is a memorable narrator with a unique perspective on life and this is a highly engaging and funny coming-of-age story that becomes all the more poignant as we begin to wonder how much coming-of-age Alex is going to get' THE BOOKSELLER
'Reading Ostrich is an experience that your emotions will thank you for. It has sad, sweet and funny moments all at once and an ending that takes the breath away. It's close to being the perfect book for adults and younger readers alike.' www.thebookbag.co.uk
'it is impossible not to compare Ostrich with another - very well known - book; The Curious Incident of The Dog In The Night-Time... well written and well paced, so if you enjoyed the bestseller that inspired Ostrich, you may well enjoy this, too' -- Christena Appleyard DAILY MAIL
'This is an endearing debut novel from Matt Greene, with an inspired and hilarious take on adolescence...Greene's unusual style and his enchanting wordplay will not only gain him favourable comparisons to Mark Haddon, but potentially earn him a place in the bestseller's list.' TIME OUT
Publication date: 08/01/2015
Publisher: Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd ) an imprint of Orion Publishing Co
Publication date: 05/09/2013
Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson an imprint of Orion Publishing Co
|Publication date:||8th January 2015|
|Publisher:||Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd ) an imprint of Orion Publishing Co|
|Genres:||NewGen - YA Fiction, eBook Favourites, Family Drama, Literary Fiction,|
|Categories:||Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945),|
Matt Greene was born in Watford in 1985 and studied English Language at the University of Sussex, where he edited The Badger newspaper and first became interested in writing for the stage. He has co-written four plays for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, including the sell-out farce The Straight Man. Ostrich is his first novel. Author photo © Imogen HainesMore About Matt Greene