Posted by: Debbie Kahl | October 31, 2010


Sparks fly in this unputdownable young adult novel about two teenagers who don’t get along – until it becomes a matter of life or death.

I’ve recently finished IT’S YR LIFE by Tristan Bancks and Tempany Deckert, despite it sitting in my bookcase for 12 or so months. I bought it last year at the Brisbane Writers Festival, when I attended their session with a gang of school kids in tow. Truthfully, I only purchased it so I could actually meet Tristan in person but that’s a whole other story. Let’s just say it has to do with him starring on Home and Away (actually they both did) when I was a teenager and I had a bit of a crush on him. Despite much snorting and snickering from a tribe of amused teenagers, he signed my copy With Love and I managed to herd the tribe away without too much more embarrassment on my behalf. Then, I put the book in my bookcase and allowed myself to be distracted by other books (and my own writing) before stumbling upon it in a recent clean up. But enough about that…

 So, what is IT’S YR LIFE about? Well, it’s about a writing project between two teens – A girl named Milla, who lives in Hollywood and a boy named Sim, who lives in Byron Bay. They’re teamed together to complete a writing project, which requires them to learn how the other lives – an interesting prospect as Milla lives in an LA mansion with her movie producer Dad, and Sim lives in a foster home and dives into dumpsters to find food. Initially, sparks fly as they struggle to find common ground but all too soon, the pair bond through their email relationship and start to confide secrets in each other through their frequent flurry of emails.

IT’S YR LIFE deals with gritty, contemporary YA topics such as; family relationships, foster homes, parental responsibility, stalking, domestic violence, drug use, freeganism, environment and friendship amongst others, in this honest, funny and moving account of two teenager’s lives. Written from both perspectives (Tempany writes as Milla and Tristan as Sim), in an email format – which is actually how the novel was written, as Tristan and Tempany emailed this story back and forth to each other – this novel suits both YA males and females.

I highly recommend this book to any teenager aged 14 years or over, and to any school who is looking for an easy to read, engaging, interesting, and contemporary YA novel for their English department.

Check out Tristan’s website for more cool stuff on IT’S YR LIFE and his other novels at  …  There’s also stuff there for teachers. And of course, there are photos of Tristan. 🙂

The equally talented Tempany Deckert’s website can be found at . She is a prolific YA writer in Australia, currently having 17 novels in print.

IT’S YR LIFE is published by Random House Australia. Click here for more information:

Happy reading everyone!


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