Our kids' book of the month for February 2014 is a tale of lost memories, lost times and lost lives - a stunning debut novel by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald.
Cosmo lives with his grandparents - they have been his family and his support since his brother died and his mum disappeared into her work, trying to escape her grief.
But Cosmo has noticed things changing – his Granddad’s memory is slowly disappearing – and his insistence on Cosmo visiting Blackbrick Abbey, with a mysterious key, strikes Cosmo as strange…
Can Cosmo change the course of his family’s future?
When Cosmo keeps his promise to go Back to Blackbrick, he unlocks the gate to the place his granddad once worked, and finds himself in the forgotten corners of a distant past, one that his granddad has, strangely, never really talked about. Here there are new beginnings, memories are just being born, friendships come to life, and everything is still possible… Cosmo arrives, frightened and alone, at the crumbling remains of Blackbrick, the gates close behind him, and when he turns to look, they're rusty and padlocked as if they haven't been opened in years. Cosmo finds himself face to face with his grandfather as a young man…
Inspired by Sarah’s experience of loss and the process of coming to terms with the effects of Alzheimer’s on her own family, Back to Blackbrick is a remembering, a testament to the power of storytelling.
Sarah Moore Fitzgerald was born in New York in 1965 but grew up in Co. Dublin. She's a professor and associate vice president at the University of Limerick in Ireland, specialising in psychology and effective pedagogy in higher education, and has published several non-fiction books on teaching, learning and academic writing. She runs regular writers' retreats for academics and students in Ireland and internationally.
All our free copies of Back to Blackbrick have now gone - but it is still available online and from all good book sellers.