Tuesday 23 November 2021



Always by Morris Gleitzman (Penguin Random House) RRP PB $19.99
ISBN 9780143793243

Reviewed by Kylie Buckley

Always is the long-awaited seventh and final book in the Felix series. In the first book, Once, we met Felix Salinger, a 10-year-old Jewish orphan living in Poland during World War II. In this last book, Always, we connect with Felix as a retired 87-year-old doctor living in Australia.

Wassim, a 10-year-old orphan living in Eastern Europe, is left a book and a letter by his late grandfather, Amon. The note acknowledges that life will be tough for the young mixed-race boy and states what to do if he ever needs help. The compelling contents of this letter becomes the catalyst for Wassim reaching out to Felix and Felix finding himself back in Eastern Europe after a 73-year hiatus.

This engaging final narrative alternates between Wassim and Felix’s points of view and leaves the reader with a lovely sense of closure on the series.

The Felix series of middle grade books are highly recommended for lovers of historical fiction. The series titles, in order of Felix’s life story are: Once, Then, After, Soon, Maybe, Now and Always. Interestingly, this is not the same order as the dates of publication. Now was initially meant to be the final book in a trilogy. However, Gleitzman discovered he had much more to reveal about Felix’s journey and Now eventually became book six in this series of seven.

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