Read Have You Seen Ally Queen? by Deb Fitzpatrick Online

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At 15 years old, Ally Queen is uprooted from her comfortable city existence and dumped in a small town. Her mother, witness to a hit-and-run, is suffering from post-traumatic stress, and the quiet country life is supposed to improve her emotional state. Instead, the move just seems to make things worse—for Mom, for Ally, for everyone. Ally misses the way things used to be;At 15 years old, Ally Queen is uprooted from her comfortable city existence and dumped in a small town. Her mother, witness to a hit-and-run, is suffering from post-traumatic stress, and the quiet country life is supposed to improve her emotional state. Instead, the move just seems to make things worse—for Mom, for Ally, for everyone. Ally misses the way things used to be; she misses playing with her dad and little brother. But she’s a teenager now, and teenage girls don’t go fishing even if they really like it. When Ally meets Rel, she feels like she’s hit rock bottom, but first impressions can be deceptive. As she starts to relax into herself, Ally finds life doesn’t need to be as hard as she makes it. This is an absorbing and poignant story of first love and self-discovery for readers both young and old....

Title : Have You Seen Ally Queen?
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781921888489
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 280 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Have You Seen Ally Queen? Reviews

  • Reynje
    2018-12-06 20:04

    Have You Seen Ally Queen is a charmingly colloquial coming-of-age story, related by the eponymous Ally, which is rather sweet without being twee. In fact, if this book was a person, I would probably call it a bit of a dag – in the quintessentially Australian use of word which is more an expression of genuine affection, rather than a criticism. I haven’t been to the west coast (come on, Australia is a wide country!) but having grown up in a coastal area, the setting of this story and Ally’s affinity for the ocean really struck a chord with me. Much to Ally’s dismay, the Queen family have relocated from Perth to Melros, a place apparently populated by “bogans, surfies and organic-spinach munching hippies”. At fifteen, Ally is contending with starting a new school, missing her friends, feeling awkwardly tall, and a serious lack of quality Killer Pythons. On top of this, Ally’s mum is experiencing PTSD, and the comfortable fabric of her family seems to be falling apart at the seams. (The novel addresses depression and anxiety in a frank and empathetic manner, rather than sick-mum trope-style fashion). Ally’s voice is the backbone of this story, so strong and clear that you can practically hear the Perth accent, and I love how distinct and full of character the narration is. Ally herself is at that very “on the cusp” point of adolescence, walking the line between the young adult and child worlds when circumstances arise that she hasn’t had to face before. The relationships with her younger brother, her father and her mother are realistically drawn, especially when it comes to Ally’s emotional and mental navigation of her Mum’s illness. I found myself relating to Ally quite a bit, having a few alternatively cringe and grin inducing flashbacks to myself at that age, and frankly just wanting to wrap this girl up in a big hug, then hang out on the beach with her. Told through short, snapshot style chapters, there is nothing massively earth-Ushattering here in terms of the story. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that readers fond of plot-driven, fast paced fiction may struggle with the gentle tone and relaxed path this novel treads. Much of the conflict centres around Ally’s internal struggles, and there’s no single “aha!” moment or enormous twist in the plot to force change. Rather, the shift in Ally and her world takes place gradually, piece by piece, as she puts down roots, develops a friendship (and a little something more), and finds ways to help heal the pain in her family. Have You Seen Ally Queen is a lovely story with scads of uniquely Australian flavour, perfectly capturing that slightly lost and awkward moment of adolescence. (Also, the cover is so gorgeous I want to frame it.)BONUS: A Highly UnScientific Analysis of Killer PythonsNo, not these pythons:These Killer Pythons!:Aim:To rediscover the Ally-Queen-style joy of the Killer Python.Hypothesis:That a person is never too old to love a good Killer Python. And red is always the best colour. (In your face, orange!)Theory: The Killer Python is a cult lolly approximately 31cm long and 1cm thick with different colours along the body of the snake. Killer Pythons are best eaten head-first. It’s a cultural tradition to stage a tug-of-war to see who gets the largest section. (Note to self: Shirley Marr has skillz in this department – do not challenge her.)Apparatus:Killer PythonsMyselfMy intrepid assistants: Ollie, JD and Katie the Barrel GirlObservations:These cannot be the same Killer Pythons that I ate as kid! Surely they used to be bigger than this? Or do I just think they were? (Last week’s Bubble-O-Bill debacle was similarly devastating, when I unwrapped it only to realise it was not the ice-cream delight of my memories but a disappointingly small lump that in no way resembled a face. Also, the bubble gum nose was more of a bulbous eye. Bill’s face was all over the place. I was unhappy.)Friends: please weigh in – I’m positive Killer Pythons used to be much longer and just more... impressive... than this. I can hear my illusions shattering all around me as I pour said pythons out of the bag. (Also, what’s with that? A true Killer Python is not bought in a bag! They should be sold loose and open to the elements and sticky kid fingers from the corner store. Field Note: They call these “Milk Bars” in Victoria.)Flavour Analysis:Red: The best. The holy grail of Killer Python colours. I challenge anyone to disagree with me! Blue: The wildcard of flavours. What exactly is this supposed to be? Blueberry? Also, the second best flavour. Awesome when it’s next to red and you get some purple happening. Green: This is not lime flavour. It’s green flavour. And much like Coola cordial, I don’t really rate it except for the novelty factor. Yellow: Yellow is the business. A kick in the tastebuds. It’s like pineapple acid. (Assistant Katie disagrees and pulls an impressive face while taste testing yellow. We amicably agree to disagree).Orange: No, just no! It tastes like snorting orange juice. I HATE ORANGE! Orange can get stuffed. Some Example SpecimensConclusion: I’m feeling rather queasy from too much sugar – I honestly don’t know how Ally did it, oh to be 15 again! Lovely Assistant Katie and I have eaten far past our Killer Python limit and are now whinging about sore stomachs and how this seemed like a much better idea at the time.But hey, all in the name of science!

  • Shirley Marr
    2018-11-18 19:01

    I can be the Queen that's inside of me/This is the chance for me to release/And be brave for you to see - Quee-ee-ee-een Quee-een-een! Every time I picked up this book to read, my brain started automatically singing this Lady Gaga song about finding your true self and as a sly segue into my review... I'm going to say that I couldn't have anything more fitting.Have You Seen Ally Queen is a coming-of-age story about 15 year old awkward Ally, whose whole family has moved to the costal town of Melros in order to make a fresh start. It makes sense afterall, Ally and her little brother love the beach (Ally in particular being a complete water baby with a deep emotional attachment to the water). Here her dad can go fishing all the time and their organic-obsessed mother can grow vegetables to her hearts delight. But underneath this normal family structure is a deep secret - will it become too much for the four of them to bear and will it end up tearing the family apart?The seachange has heartbreakingly backfired. Ally, her brother and dad used to go to the beach at least four times a week back in Perth and afterwards come home to steaming mugs of milos from their mother. At Melros, where the ocean is at their feet, Ally's dad hardly goes to the beach anymore, Ally feels like a fish out of water at her new school and their mother isn't even living in the family home. Even Ally's sanctuary seems to turn against her, as a family of whales beach themselves up on the sand and not all of them can be saved.Ally's life is unravelling. She feels she can't make any friends at the new school and as a young girl on the brink of womanhood, she feels uncomfortable in her own skin. She feels gangly and too tall. She thinks one thing and her mouth will say another. If only she could be perfect (an "Angelgirl") then life would fall into place. But Ally can't help herself. Back in Perth the School Counsellor didn't try and hound her, she had her own crowd, the place wasn't full of ignoramus hicks and the other thing - the Killer Pythons (the lollies that is) suck!But meeting annoying boy Rel (that's Rellard) could be the best thing that's ever happened to her, to make her realise that he's the one thing that she could have never found in Perth. And through the power of her actions and her heart, maybe she can help to slowly heal her family.Firstly let's get the question on everyone's minds out of the way. Deb Fitzpatrick's debut novel 90 packets of Instant Noodles was a breakthrough in terms of her realistic first-person portrayal of a teenage boy, so the question obviously is - Can Fitzpatrick perform the same coup from the first-person perspective of a teen girl?The answer is yes yes yes and yes! I absolutely adored Ally Queen. She is fresh and funny and a little bit potty-mouthed and written in such a way that is so true to the teen experience. It is hard not to adore her. I loved watching her grow and mature before my eyes. I loved how she slowly broke down the boundaries of her insulated self and how once she started letting other people in - Rel in particular - she was able to let her love flow free and help hold her entire family together.The burgeoning first love between Ally and Rel is also heart-tingling beautiful to observe. If I could describe this book, it would be sweet, gorgeous, real and poetic. Even the short chapters are like little vignettes that can be read over and slowly savoured.The nature in which Ally's mother illness is tacked in a very realistic and sensitive manner. I've seen the "Big Illness and/or Depression" tackled before, but not this one, which I suspect is quite common, but invisiable. This is wonderful.I love the Australian (and in particular Perth) feel of the book. I love how contemporary and fresh it is. I love this soft and whimsical world that Fitzpatrick has created within these pages. If you love younger-end contempt YA or you loved Sue Lawson's Allie McGregor's True Colours (I love both), then you need to get this novel.This is a book that will leave a smile on my face for days to come and a lingering feel in my heart and belly (like a warm milo). The cover is perfect and beautiful. All water-colour awash and shiny font. Love the jellyfish on the back cover. Fremantle Press is on a winning streak with matching content and mood with the covers!A final thing to note: I love how intrinsic food is to Fitzpatrick's work. Instant noodles in her first book, now jelly Killer Pythons and mulberries. It's gives a very nourishing and warm aspect to her work. Gorgeous!Thank you to Claire Miller of Fremantle Press for the review copy

  • Isamlq
    2018-12-07 20:29

    3.5/5I may not know what a bogan is nor what Killer Pythons look like (gummy worms, maybe?) plus there must have been a dozen or more expressions that flew over my head, but the story in this one is precisely my cup of tea. Meeting Ally Mc Queen was all yeah, yeah, and yeah for me (and I don't mean the bored/ disinterested kind of yeah.) I like a girl who’s not quite sugar and spice and everything nice. She’s picky and moody and all over the place; she says what’s on her head a lot of the time without thinking things through. But, I liked her working through things and with others, to find that place that’s right for her. What I liked more is that it’s done in the midst of everything being unfamiliar: new place, new school, new people. All made even more complicated by a mother not being what she’s used to and a father not quite sure about what to do about it either. Most of them: they’re all just there, except none of it was easy. Then there’s this lovely development in the form of the boy. Sweet, I suppose… them going from teasing (almost in a boy pulls girl’s pony tail way) to getting to know the other more. A bit more refreshing is the fact they feel, mostly sweet and tentative instead of all heat and flash; they act their age, slow to open up, funny about inconsequential things… then suddenly serious. Good match them, him the jokester… her, the girl who has got everything else up in the air.Up in the air? She doesn’t want to be where she is. She finds fault in most everything everyone decides, and nitpicks over her reactions. That she has a name for each reaction she had made her even funnier in my book. I picture her in LAM (Loud-mouth Ally Mode) or in SAM (Smartypants Ally Mode) and I get the sense that this girl lives in her head a lot. In fact there’s one moment when things are falling into place with people in it seeming OK when she goes and tells herself simply to stop thinking that. Why, yes... this is my kind of story.

  • jesse
    2018-11-22 22:27

    3.75/5notes: lovelay book. no, really. one minor quibble though: the protagonist's age was supposed to be 15, but her voice came across like that of a 12-13 year old. stumbled across this thanks to shirley marr who gushed about both fremantle press and have you seen ally queen?. ebook has been acquired through fishpond.some people are meant to be alone in life, and that doesn't mean they'll be lonely, [dad] said. he looked at me and said that i don't have to get married or even have a boyfriend if i don't want -- that i shouldn't be worried about what other people do, just follow my own heart. i just wish i knew what was in my own heart, though. it sounds so easy --just be yourself-- but how can you do that when you don't know who you are in the first place? or who it is you want to be?

  • Gina Kennealey
    2018-12-02 22:14

    Have you seen Ally Queen is an Australian novel set in a coastal town not too far from Mandurah called Melros. The novel was written by Deb Fitzpatrick who is a local woman from Fremantle. The book would be a part of the young adult section or possibly the self esteem or relationship area and would be aimed at twelve to sixteen year old girls.Ally is a fifteen year old girl who has recently moved to a small country town after living in Perth her whole life. She is constantly worried about what others think of herself and her family. The new town in full of bogans and surfies who aren't exactly her cup of tea. Her hippie-like mum is suffering from post-traumatic stress so is staying with her sister, Ally's aunt, her brother is being annoying as usual and her dad is a worrywort! Nothing is going well until she meets Rel, a dreamy boy from down the street.Ally is a not so confident teenager who doubts herself on a daily basis. she is spontaneous and a bit of a loud mouth though. Through speech and thoughts we find out that she feels she has been separated from everyone and everything she loves. Her character really shows just how awkward and confusing life is for a teenage girl. At first I believe that she is not a very likeable character, she is selfish and whines about every little thing but once you get inside her head and a fair way through the book we discover that she can be kind and is acting like any fifteen year old girl would, with maybe a tad of over reacting. Ally begins to feel hurt and uncomfortable about her mum's "sickness" but by the end of the book she is above her insecurities and acting much nicer to her family.Other than Ally the only other central character is Rel. The book doesn't describe Rel very well in detail but I think that at first he is annoying but we then come to realize that he is a sweet caring boy. He takes a fancy to Ally which she isn't particularly bothered by but this then makes her feel like she has a place in Melros and is no longer an outcast.A scene in the which I really enjoyed would have to be when Ally was arriving home from the beach and is curious about her mum's whereabouts. She is asked to sit down by her dad which usually means something is up. We discover that her mum is under a lot of stress and that makes Ally quite upset and through her actions of "my knees go a bit and I nearly fall to the bed" she is obviously nervous and really does care dearly for her mum even if she may not always show it.A key issue in this story would be self esteem. Deb discusses this by having Ally as a flat chested girl who is lost with herself. She's torn between who she is and who she wants to be. Ally worries about anything and everything in her life and tries to forget about these by hanging around at the calm and peaceful beach by her house. I think that Deb has written about self esteem as though, everyone has their problems and we all just get through at our own pace. Another issue would be that family is so, so important. I believe that Deb may have included this in the book because she might have had some family problems and has overcome them and realised that her family are the most important people.This was a fantastic book and I really loved how I could relate to some things that Ally was going through. I also enjoyed how it was set in WA and close to Perth. I would recommend this book to girls who like the beach, relationship novel or have troubles with self esteem. I would rate this book a nine out of ten!

  • Lilian
    2018-12-14 19:22

    I felt like Ally was always a drama queen and was always stubborn and ignorant.I'm not sure if the author did it on purpose but I just wanted to smack her face for being so selfish.

  • Kai
    2018-12-13 15:02

    Review posted at Amaterasu ReadsPeople react differently to change. Understandably, Ally Queen is one of them. At fifteen, she had left behind all the things she had known, friends, school, home, in exchange for a mundane and boring existence in the countryside. Ally knew she was never quite fit to live life in a quiet, small place, because she was different. Tall, flat as a board and awkward, Ally misses life in the city, on top of her insecurities she struggles to cope with her mother's "sickness" and school wasn't really the best place to be. She had a genius brother with a world of his own and a father who doesn't quite know what to do when their mother suddenly wants to stay away from themAlly is an interesting teenage girl. It's always nice to dive into a character's heart and soul, taking a peek into her life in her own perspective. There was a lot of negativity in Ally's move to Melros, add to that her being conscious towards her puberty and being a "woman". She never quite understood how her mother's sickness will affect her family. She was confused and hurt that her mother was taking a break from them, her family. What kind of mother does that? Ally felt unloved on top of it all, and it all adds up to the reasons she thinks it's wrong to live there.High school wasn't much better. She is a smart, witty girl, who doesn't want to be noticed. She must not have realized it but her long walks to the beach and swimming out the sea has helped her change her outlook towards living countryside. And of course, there is Rel. Rel, who stood up for her when the news about her mother's sickness became a reason to mock her. Rel, who was annoying and made her appreciate her life and her family.It was a bit difficult to understand a few parts since there are a few Australian words I don't know. But it was nice to learn about a few of them. I think 'arvo' is my new favorite word, and it makes me want to eat Killer Pythons. Makes me want to go hiking, to swim, to start fishing, to live in a beach. Makes me want to eat blueberries, hang out in a deli and just stay in the beach, soaking the sun.Deb Fitzpatrick has a certain eloquence in her writing that endears her and her characters to the readers. Ally certainly is not a perfect teenager, but the realness of her situation and the honesty of her reactions to her problems is what makes her such a great read. One moment I pity her, another getting irritated, but when I finished the book I just loved her. I think Deb's writing is just beautiful. Simple and refined. Serious and sometimes funny. Have You Seen Ally Queen captures the dynamics of a family. turning it into an extraordinary reading journey.Slowly but surely, Australian authors like Deb makes me realize how much talent there is in Australia, especially when it comes to writing. This is another great example!

  • Tara Calaby
    2018-12-12 22:07

    Deb Fitzpatrick's second novel, Have You Seen Ally Queen? is a contemporary YA offering with a literary style. The chapters are unusually brief – one is just one page – and the narrative voice is also quite short, with situations often being described through short moments in time and character interactions rather than deep insights into Ally's head. In some senses, it felt a little like Fitzpatrick's taciturn tone undermined the character of her protagonist. The reader is told that Ally is spontaneous and unrestrained and a bit of a loudmouth, but the first person narrative often seems to give the exact opposite impression. It is difficult to know how much this was planned by the author. Should the reader consider it an indication of an unreliable narrator and an example of the ways in which Ally is struggling to discover herself as a maturing teen in a new location? Certainly, it could be read that way, but I personally found it contributed to my lack of identification with the novel's protagonist.Ally is realistic and age-appropriate, but she doesn't give much of herself to the reader – at least not readily. Much in Have You Seen Ally Queen? is implied, rather than stated, which is a technique I love in short fiction but one that is not commonly found in novels for young readers. I'm not sure it works in this context. There is a lack of immediacy in the book, despite it being written in present tense, and this meant that I was not captured by the plot when feeling distant from the protagonist. It's a pity that I couldn't get into the style of Have You Seen Ally Queen?, because the content of the novel is fantastic. It combines coming-of-age themes with a very real exploration of mental illness and the effect it can have on the loved ones of the sufferer. Fitzpatrick does not make Ally's mother unsympathetic, but also does not shy away from the full range of reactions experienced by Ally herself – some of which are quite critical of her mother's behaviour.In terms of the issues it explores, Have You Seen Ally Queen? has a lot to say to young readers, so I hope that it does well, despite my personal lack of connection with its style.

  • Precious
    2018-12-03 22:00

    Ally was the perfect example of a troubled teen. She was experiencing personality crisis. After moving to Melros and leaving her old school, her friends and everything she has ever been familiar with, she assumed the role of the new girl, the new neighbor and the newest friendless freak. In a place where there are only bogans, surfies and spinach-munching hippies, she stood out like a sore thumb. Her family was composed of her genius, geeky little brother, her problem-solving Dad and her idealistic Mum. Her mum was against a lot of things. She was into the herbal, alternative, all-natural stuff. With her ideas, she imposed rules on her children. Ally was sick with it. But Ally knew that she was being harsh. She wanted to change into Angelgirl. But the only problem was that it was getting harder and harder to behave. Wave after wave of problems crashed onto her world, soaking her until her own body felt heavy with the issues and anxiety.Amongst the unfamiliar faces, the rude jokes and the weirdness of Melros, she met Rel, a guy from school and her neighbor. But she first knew him as the irritating guy from the bus. Together they discovered that they had so many things in common. They became friends. Ally saw something in him that she has never seen before. Deb Fitzpatrick was a genius! Her writing was so gorgeous, so witty and so full of life that it stunned me and made me read several paragraphs over and over again. The story was a perfect reflection of the modern family as they face problems.Have You Seen Ally Queen is a literary masterpiece, filled with humor and life, with just the right dose of awkwardness and sweetness for it to be realistic. It is a worthwhile Aussie contemporary read for readers of all ages. I highly recommend this!

  • Mary
    2018-12-04 21:00

    I'm sorry, this book wasn't really for me. Slightly disappointed but the book had cute characters. I thought the author lacked understanding of a teenager's thoughts and the schoolwork was very simple for year 10. But, the book did have a nice aura/feeling to it but I wouldn't really consider it my favourite nor my tops. I liked how the character's mind developed throughout the story - Interesting. The boy's personality was cute, I smiled at his cute awkward parts, it wasn't the girl being awkward, it was the boy :) this was a cute idea.

  • Jess - The Tales Compendium
    2018-12-10 20:10

    In A Nutshell:A realistic and relevant book for girls aged 13+ set in a fictional West Australian coastal town. To read my full review, please visit my blog:http://www.thetalescompendium.com/201...

  • Juanita Molina
    2018-11-17 22:28

    This book is really good. Sometimes it makes you feel like you are actually in the book! especially when the main character ( Alison Queen) is at the beach where she spends most of her time at. i really enjoyed this book.

  • Deb
    2018-11-30 20:14

    Young Adult. The killer pythons was a great touch. Made me laugh every time they popped up.Love stories set in Western Australia.

  • Frezanda
    2018-12-06 18:16

    My rating might be a bit biased because I can't stop comparing this book with 'Saving Francesca'. It touched similar issue. Depressed mother... New school...It's not as humorous as SF though.

  • Ellie
    2018-11-23 17:24

    so cute!!!!!!!!! (: I finished it smiling...