#EmptyShelf 2016 #31: Blue Gold by Elizabeth Stewart #TRM15 (Annick, 2014)

blue-gold-stewartAnother day, another teenage novel, one that was made all the more real by having watched Apple’s Broken Promises on Panorama for a unit I teach – The Responsible Marketer – which looked at people working in dangerous conditions in China and Africa to produce the goods that western society wants – now (and yes, I have an iPhone these days..).

Blue Gold tells the story from the perspective of three teenage girls – Fiona, who lives in the US, and is waiting for a new phone whilst she recovers from a sexting incident; Laiping who works in a huge factory in China producing components for phones; and Sylvie, who fled the Congo with her family over conflicts re coltan (the blue gold in the story) – an essential mineral for use in phones/computers. We see how their stories merge together at the end, as each is represented by their image shared via the internet.

Definitely a book that would encourage discussions, I think… and yes, I’ve kept this one!