The novel ‘The Story of Tom Brennan” is written by Australian author J. C. Burke. The book is written in a first person perspective of main character Tom Brennan, who is seventeen years old and it portrays the way he deals and adjusts with his new life after a major tragedy has struck. The novel also shows how he started to mature to a young adult as events unfold. Tom Brennan starts off in the novel as a popular teenager, successful rugby player and also a member of the respected family: the Brennans.
He thought his life was going all well until his older brother Daniel, whom he idolized, was involved in a fatal car accident.
Daniel, who was heavily intoxicated while driving the car faster than the limit, kills two of his friends as well as paralyzing their cousin Fin. This event begins to take its toll on the Brennans as they are shunned and blamed for the Daniel’s negligence.
Being an object of hatred was difficult for Tom to deal with, in contrast to his life before the accident. After moving to a new town for a fresh start, he began to close himself off from both his old friends back in Mumbilli and the new people in Coghill.
Tom turned into an insecure teenager and feared that people in the Coghill would find out about his brother and the accident. Family has always been important to Tom as throughout the book it in shown through the way he treats his parents, sister, grandmother, uncle and during his visits to his brother and cousin. At first, Tom was hostile and secluded towards his family but by the end of the book, he began to be a loving and affectionate towards them. At the end of the novel, after dealing with the challenges along the way, he begins to be more of his old self again and also started a relationship with Chrissie.