Kengo's Reviews > Trash

Trash by Andy Mulligan
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Feb 26, 12

Read in February, 2012

Trash by Andy Mulligan is a best selling fiction book for older readers which has mystery, horror and realism all packed inside 232 pages. It has a peculiar style of writing because in almost every few chapters the narrator changes; thus making it have different views from several characters. The story is set in the near future and is about 3 dumpsite boys trying to uncover a great mystery. It all starts with a 14 year old boy, Raphael Fernandez finding a trash bag, in which he finds another bag which contains a wallet with eleven hundred pestos, a folded up map, a key, a few old papers, photos and a ID card which read Jose Angelico. At first He and his friend Gardo don't know how precious it actually is until the police come that evening and ask for the bag for a big reward. From that, the 2 boys find out some of it's worth, and not trusting the police, chooses to keep it hidden in Rat/ Jun-Jun's house because the police won’t search there. Rat whose other name is Jun-Jun is a 10 year old boy who has no relatives with a somewhat mysterious past. From then onward, the 3 boys slowly goes though the mystery. As the mystery gets uncovered, the 3 boys learn about corruption in their country and the will of a man who tried to get back what was taken.

I liked almost every part in this book all the way from the start to the end but there are 3 which are my favorites.

The first part I liked was how Gardo got to Gabriel Olondriz to find out what Jose Angelico’s letter meant. The description of the jail that Olondriz was in was so realistic and horrifying that it got me frightened just by reading it. The way Gardo got to the jail that Olondriz was in, was also nicely written. He tricks Olivia Weston a house-mother at a mission school near the dumpsite by saying that he needs to meet his grandfather in a jail. He convinces Olivia to buy him clothes to make him not look like a dumpsite boy, then acts his role of saying that he had to help his grandfather now which convinces her to pay all the costs which was a terrifying amount. In the jail, there were people inside cages all screaming and shouting at Gardo and Olivia for help which makes her feel very upset and makes her sick. The way she feels as she sees things that she had never seen in her life is all written down so precisely from the point of her view. Then they finally see the old man who looks like he might just die any second now. The way the author described Olondriz’s eyes “Short-sighted but hungry- peering, as if he had been waiting for me” was great and made me turn to the next page.

Another part I liked was when they finally find out what the code means. The code which was in the letter that Jose Angelico sent before his death was meant for Gabriel Olondriz to read, but when Gardo meets Olondriz, he doesn’t have the key to the code, which is his bible. Although Olondriz tries to pass the book to the 3 boys, it is taken by the police. When the 3 boys asks to get the book, they are told to get an huge amount of twenty thousand pestos. Somehow rat gets the sum and trades it with the bible successfully. Raphael and Gardo try and find out the code until midnight. However they can’t even get past the first set of numbers. When midnight comes, and the date changes into what was coincidentally “All soul’s day”, they finally hit jackpot. It is described in the book that maybe Jose Angelico and Gabriel Olondriz came into the room and put the answer in Gardo’s head (it is said in this book that on All soul’s day/ the day of the dead it is thought that the dead come back for a day). I really liked this description of how the author took use of the date and described it very magically.

The last part I liked was when the 3 boys meet find the poor quarter. This event also happens on All soul’s day at the cemetery which was the location the code told them to go. So in the cemetery the 3 boys try and find Jose Angelico’s family’s grave but they fail to do so and chooses to ask a guard. By the time the location of the grave is told to them, it already started turning dark. The 3 boys try to get to the location but they still can’t find the grave. As they continue to fail in finding the grave, the sun completely falls and the moon comes up. The boys struggling to see anything, chooses to climb a wall. This is when they finally find out that they were for the whole time searching in the rich quarter and hadn’t gone to the poor quarter which was on the other side of the wall. The author describes the moment that they saw the poor side from the 3 boy’s view “that is when we saw the brightest light.” The brightest light is a part in Jose Angelico’s code. I liked this expression a lot because it opened up one of the mysteries that I was wondering about.

I really liked this book as it was realistic, scary and exciting. It is definitely the kind of book that I wouldn't have read before but it is now one of my favorite books. The way the mystery unfolds bit by bit keeps you turning to the next page. It constantly has action and no part is boring. Although the horror and gruesomeness included in some parts may make it not recommendable to kids aged 11 or under, I still think it in a book that can be enjoyed by many readers.
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Comments (showing 1-8 of 8) (8 new)

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James Great Review Kengo, I like how you say when "all souls day" came about they finally hit jackpot. Do you think that the jackpot was a physical and tangible item, or could it have also been something intangible too?


Kengo James wrote: "Great Review Kengo, I like how you say when "all souls day" came about they finally hit jackpot. Do you think that the jackpot was a physical and tangible item, or could it have also been something..."

It was something intangible because I used the word "Jackpot" to express cracking the code and so it wasn't a physical item.


James That's a very valid answer. Do you believe that the boys attained any other intangible item whilst on this trip to the cemetery? What do you think they learned through this experience? are you looking forward to the sequel if there is one?


message 4: by Kengo (last edited May 01, 2012 07:37PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kengo James wrote: "That's a very valid answer. Do you believe that the boys attained any other intangible item whilst on this trip to the cemetery? What do you think they learned through this experience? are you look..."

I think they grew up more as the trip continued, because they started making quick choices as they went through numerous obstacles. The main intangible item they attained I think is the knowledge that they attained as they saw things that they never saw before in the outside world. If there was a sequel I would most likely read it because I want to know what the trio did after going to Brazil to escape and how the money they threw in the dump got used.


James Kengo wrote: "James wrote: "That's a very valid answer. Do you believe that the boys attained any other intangible item whilst on this trip to the cemetery? What do you think they learned through this experience..."

I agree wholeheartedly. Being the privileged kids that we are, do you think that is it an advantage or disadvantage to be able to see the outside world? What do you think your life would be like if you put yourself in their shoes?


message 6: by Kengo (last edited May 03, 2012 05:46PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kengo James wrote: "Kengo wrote: "James wrote: "That's a very valid answer. Do you believe that the boys attained any other intangible item whilst on this trip to the cemetery? What do you think they learned through t..."

I think it is an advantage to be able to know the outside world, as we have more knowledge which we can share and by being in the outside world, we won't be brainwashed like some people who the country has blocked all info about the outside world. I think life will be very harsh if I was a dump boy as I would never have enough of anything.


James I agree with you completely. In some recent movies, there is a new concept of harnessing the power of the mind instead of the power of wealth. Which do you think is more important. Do you think that you would be able to adapt to a dumpster situation if you were in one? What would you do to ensure your survival?


Kengo James wrote: "I agree with you completely. In some recent movies, there is a new concept of harnessing the power of the mind instead of the power of wealth. Which do you think is more important. Do you think tha..."

I think that they are both important because without both, the mind and the money, you can't survive. I think that I would never be able to adapt to a dumpster situation because I am already so used to the situation that I am in. I think there would be almost nothing I could do to ensure my survival because once you are a dumpsite-boy, it is very hard to get out of it.


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