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'''Who are you?'' Jess asks the River Boy. But she knew she wasn't ready for questions; or, at least, she wasn't ready for answers. Deep down she knew this boy was linked to the destiny of Grandpa and answers meant revelation.' Jess returns with her dying grandfather to his boyhood home and pledges to help him finish his last painting. The journey is a painful one. Before Jess can help her grandfather find release she must also accept the mysterious River Boy's challenge. The river is a metaphor for life and this elegiac novel like the river itself is slow and meditative, but with deceptive pace and undercurrent in places, it inexorably flows and opens out to its final resolution. River Boy is an interesting addition to the growing body of literature for young people which deals with death and dying but in doing so it also examines what it means to live life to the full.