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Everybody Jam

3.27 of 5 stars 3.27  ·  rating details  ·  216 ratings  ·  43 reviews
Danny lives on a cattle station in the middle of the Australian outback, where everyone’s getting ready for the annual muster. But this year, everything is different: because Danny’s beloved older brother Jonny has died in a farm accident, and nobody talks about it: because his fouteen year old sister is pregnant, and about to be packed off to Alice Springs in disgrace: be ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published March 3rd 2011 by Andersen
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 415)
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Joanne
I'm not entirely sure what I expected from Everybody Jam, but what I got wasn't it. Although I enjoyed reading it, I finished it thinking, "That's it?"

The story is of several months in Danny Dawson's life, a cattle ranch owner's son in the Australian outback. His brother, Jonny, died a year ago, his sister, Sissy, is pregnant, and there has been a long drought - things are not looking great. But Danny is looking forward to this year's muster - where the cattle across the territory are gathered t
...more
Becky
Mar 05, 2011 Becky rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone!
Shelves: read-for-review
Everybody Jam is a poignant, funny and earthy coming-of-age story. I found it utterly mesmerising.


Danny is thirteen and this is the last year he will be at home on the cattle ranch for the annual muster. Next year he will be off at boarding school in Alice Springs. But this year everything is different because this is the first muster without Johnny. Danny is struggling to cope with the loss of his older brother and so are the rest of his family but no one talks about it. It is not only Danny’s
...more
Caren
May 06, 2012 Caren rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
This book is shortlisted for the 2012 Carnegie Medal, which is how I heard of it, as it apparently hasn't been published in the USA. The author has worked in journalism and did actually spend time on a cattle station in Australia, so the story is told in a quite straight-forward way, almost as a piece of journalism. It is a sort of slice of time on the ranch, as seen through the eyes of a thirteen-year-old boy. In that way, it could be considered a coming of age sort of story. The back cover war ...more
Candy Wood
The suggested reading level for Everybody Jam is 12 and over according to the Carnegie shortlist, and a note on the back cover warns “unsuitable for younger readers”: while the plot involves adult issues and language, it’s all presented from a child’s perspective. Danny, the narrator, is 13, living with his family on a cattle station in the Australian outback. His older brother Jonny recently died in an accident, and his 14-year-old sister Sissy has come home pregnant from boarding school. The g ...more
Sam Piper
So now I've finished, did this novel improve?

Unfortunately no!

It is entirely the fault of the narrator I think and just shows how hugely important the narrative voice is in a first person narrative. Here it is the voice of a thirteen year old boy and he just annoyed the hell out of me (and as a parent and teacher, I have quite a high threshold for teenage annoyance!)!

The episode where he stole a ute and drove into a stampede of cattle in order to save his camel left me speechless for all the wr
...more
Big Book Little Book
Alison: www.bigbooklittlebook.blogspot.com

When Danny's mum admits she can't cope, the family hires a housegirl to help out - a wide-eyed English backpacker. She doesn't have a clue what she's let herself in for. And neither do they.

Danny is thirteen and still trying to cope after the death of his older brother last year. He has an older sister Sissy who is pregnant at fourteen. Its summer in Australia and the rains aren’t coming. The annual muster at the cattle station at which Danny lives is ab
...more
Shazaan
Everybody Jam is a very different novel. It’s unique and certainly ‘broadened my horizons’. Ali Lewis has written a remarkable debut and definitely deserves to be on the shortlist.
It describes the transition of emotions in the everyday life of thirteen-year-old Danny Dawson. Living at Timber Creek Station in the Australian Outback, and certainly enduring more hardships than any other teenager I’ve known, Danny is determined to prove himself to the fellas at the annual muster.
The muster is the se
...more
Rooserd
http://www.bol.com/nl/p/de-schoenen-v...
De dertienjarige Danny woont op een Australische veeboerderij. Het is al wekenlang veel te heet, zijn ouders maken ruzie, zijn veertienjarige zus is zwanger. Maar Danny mist vooral zijn oudere broer Jonny die een jaar geleden is verongelukt. Niemand wil erover praten. Daarom zoekt hij troost bij een bijzonder huisdier, zijn kameel Buzz. Samen met Buzz wil Danny bewijzen dat hij de plaats van zijn broer op de farm kan innemen. Wanneer Danny's moeder het wer
...more
Luna
Everybody Jam takes place a year after Danny’s older brother died and just after his sister gets found out. Danny is mad at his sister for causing more hassle in the run up to the muster (yearly cattle gathering), the first one he gets to take part in before he has to leave for boarding school. At his mother’s insistence the family hires a housegirl, Liz who knows nothing about cattle farming or making toast without burning down a kitchen.

Everybody Jam is narrated by Danny over several months as
...more
Georgie
A great coming-of-age tale set in the Australian outback. Danny Dawson is a 13 year old boy who lives on a cattle station in the outback with his family. Last year Danny's older brother Jonny was killed in an accident and the whole family is still grieving. Danny's 14 year old sister is pregnant but won't say who the father of the baby is. Danny's parents decide to hire a house girl to help out around the house as Danny's mum has to take care of his big sister. A British girl named Liz who Danny ...more
Beth Bonini
I'm always teaching my young students how to work out vocabulary words by using contextual clues, and this book (set on a cattle station in the Australian outback) gave me a chance to practice what I preach. One of the strongest aspects of the book is the "voice" of its young protagonist, Danny, and it is rich in an Australian vernacular (which was mostly unknown to me).

There is a lot of drama in this book, and it comes thick and fast. I've always noticed that troubles seem to come in bunches,
...more
Dilara
'Everybody Jam' was more of a holiday book, because it took a while to read.

I believe the name 'Everybody Jam', itself, has a message: it means a thing or a person that everybody loves. This could be Australia, the muster, Jonny, Alex or Liz. Deep down, I think it might show the link between the whites and the Aborigines because 'Everybody Jam' is something they all like and thereby have in common.

I thought that it was very clever of the author to add Liz into the story as she was a reflection o
...more
Yellowoasis
What a wonderful, wonderful book. When I opened it and read the first page and saw that it is written in Aussie vernacular, my heart sank. I thought, oh this is a gimmick, it will get tedious very quickly. How wrong I was. The book feels so fresh and vibrant written this way. Life on an Australian cattle farm could hardly be any less sentimental. It’s tough, dirty, hard work. The portrayal of Danny is so incredibly tender; he’s still a child but desperate to grow up, and the way his grieving for ...more
Barbara
Read this as part of the Carnegie shortlist. Enjoyed it eventually but took me quite a while to get into it. The story is set in Australia so there's lots of Australian words for things, it's quite easy to guess what they are (if they're not explained) but I can imagine that some students would find this offputting. There's also a lot of Australian place names (no idea if they're made up or really exist) and these were also a bit off-putting - even some of the students remarked that they didn't ...more
Kate Robinson
Well written and hooked me from the very beginning, characters were well placed and helped describe the unknown aspects of the environment, making you feel like you understood everything, which is surprising as there are many aspects of the book that I'm sure others would be unfamiliar with, but through the character of 'liz' Ali Lewis explains the scenes with ease, cleverly done and a good read. The idea of cattle mustering intrigued me and fuelled my need to travel, I enjoyed the prospect of t ...more
Margaret
Didn't expect to enjoy this but.......it was another one that really dragged me in. An epic story about the harshness of the Australian Outback, the tough people who live there fighting to make a living against the weather extremes a constant hard working life. At first I thought it was based in the past as some of the ideas the people had were so old fashioned and quite prejudiced. The layers come away slowly and you see how vulnerable the characters are in the family. It is written from Danny' ...more
Heather Noble
The story is told by 13 year old Danny and assumes the reader knows Australian vernacular, cattle mustering and much else about the Australian outback and relations with Aboriginal people. There is much to shock as far as attitudes and lifestyle go and and the new British home help is there to voice and reflect our British sensibilities. But her gently cajoling Danny to talk about the recent death of his older brother, the pregnancy of his 14 year old sister and her own eagerness to learn about ...more
Ela
Jun 04, 2012 Ela rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Ela by: Carnegie shortlist 2012
This book just never really flowed.
The story follows a family who own a cattle ranch during a drought in the Australian outback.
It is always inportant to have a good protagoinist so it was dissapointing that Danny (the main character) was really annoying and I found myself constantly cursing his stupid dicisions.
It was one of those stories that just got worse and worse, so if you are looking for a cheerful book, steer clear of this.
The ending, while sweet, was a bit of a let down, the relations
...more
Cindy
'De schoenen van mijn broer' is geschreven vanuit het perspectief van Danny, een dertienjarige jongen. Ali Lewis heeft zich goed verplaatst in het karakter en de manier waarop een kind van die leeftijd de wereld waarneemt. Het is een geloofwaardig verhaal dat makkelijk leesbaar is. Het leven in de Australische woestijn wordt op een beeldende manier weergegeven en je waant je bijna op de droge zandgronden tussen het vee. Een verhaal over vechten voor je plek, volwassen worden en bijzondere vriend ...more
Corien
About Danny, a kid growing up on a big farm in the Northern Territories. Hard life in general, and I found it a cold family with hardly any communication. His brother died, his 14 year old sister is pregnant (from an Aboriginal, oh the horror), and he's training a camel (Buzz), as well as an English nanny who clearly never lived on a farm.

Didn't like the book much. Too much racism, and too many dead cows.

Might have liked it better in English, I read it in Dutch - I really enjoyed the 'slang' I
...more
Libraryatjis
A nice story of an English girl going to work on a ranch in the Australian outback.
Anna
This was a book in two halves - the first half was very much setting up the background scenario and about 120 pages in I was ready to put this down. The second half of the book has more to it however so I am glad I finished it. Danny is pretty annoying as a main character, most of the time I felt irritated by him which is one of the reasons I nearly lost it in the middle but the story picked up when Sissy came back into the picture. Overall I felt it needed more light and shade in the writing st ...more
Sarah
Danny is 13 and lives on a cattle ranch in the middle of the Australian outback. He's looking forward to the muster and proving himself to be capable of fillling his dead brother's shoes, but his stupid sister has got herself pregnant and his Mum can't cope. She's advertises for a housegirl and Liz arrives and is constantly referred to as the Pommie throughout the book. I struggled with this. Found a lot of it offensive but loved the scenes with the Buzz the Camel. Gritty, rough, raw.
Sarah
Great book. The Australian desert; hostility and isolation from the POV of a boy who calls it home. Although some who have reviewed this book missed beautiful sweeping descriptions of the landscapes, I loved that Lewis stayed true to Danny's voice, showing an affection for and understanding of this alien environment which makes it all the more weird and wonderful.
Beautiful mix of landscape and family drama. Definitely one to recommend.
Khadija
I found it quite hard to get into the book and it was difficult at times in understanding some of the vernacular language that was used; the author assumed that readers were well aware of the language used on a cattle ranch.
The plot was quite nice though and the setting was quite wierd adding to the 'wonderful' element. I like the character of Danny and this book is really quite emotional and sentimental
Helen Black
I didn't engage with any of the characters in this book and although I could see what it was trying to do, it didn't do it for me. I thought she brought in too many of her own experiences and then couldn't really focus on the imaginative parts with enough distance! Maybe it's because I've never been interested in Australia ... or cows! Who knows?
Rachel Sargeant
Danny has to grow up fast when his big brother dies, his younger sister gets pregnant and his parents are at their wits’ end. But this isn’t a weepy book about social issues, it’s a fast-paced story about life in the Australian outback on a cattle ranch. Well worth reading.
Fran
I found this book startling and refreshing in it's unvarnished honesty. Like the environment in which the story is set, the language is sparse and unforgiving but the story is interwoven with heart and feeling for all the characters however unsympathetic they are.
Alison Forde
YA novel set on an Australian cattle station, where casual racism and cow slaughter are a big part of life. Still, always interesting to learn about life in an alien environment and enjoyed Danny's emotional development and the handling of grief in the family.
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Ali Lewis was born in rural North Yorkshire in 1976, the second of three children.

Being cast as Rose Herriot in the final series of All Creatures Great and Small opened the door to a new world.

After graduating from university, she went into a career in journalism, then in 2002 she left to travel the world. It was in Australia, working on an outback cattle station, that she found the inspiration fo
...more
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