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It is story of a devoted grandson and loving grandfather. There is adventure and thrilling chase and escape which bring about many interesting moments
for both Rory and grandfather. We feel as we read of a grandfather who is sent to the old peoples home and his grandson to the childrens home, a
separation that is extremely difficult for both of them. Rory and his grandfather, Granda, have looked after each other since Rorys dad walked out on
them. Granda is given to lapses in memory (putting Rorys homework down the rubbish chute and the rubbish in Rorys school bag) and completely
irresponsible behaviour (setting fire to his coat at a Parents Evening), but he has a generous heart. Rory acts as his carer until there is a fire in the flat
and the authorities decide to separate them. Rory comes up with an escape plan. But their path of escape is not easy as their pictures are in the
newspapers and on every television screen. Their journey is full of unexpected moments when it looks like they will be caught by the authorities.
His Granda however is very frail and needs a lot of medication. On the way they meet a lot of people who have recognised them from the news. These
people have actually helped them in their venture. Rory and his Granda travelled by train, boat, caravan, cars and most of the time with their feet. In the
end, sadly, Rory has to end the venture, but not by being caught, he actually had to go to the police to find help for his Granda, whose heart had stopped.
Rory had been hoping that his father who had abandoned the family and whom he has no seen for the last ten years would reach out and help. The story
ends on a happy note when Rorys dad gets in touch with him due to the publicity.


Major characters
Rorys grandfather. He is also known as Mister McIntosh. He is elderly and partially senile with a tendency to forget what he is doing (never puts off his
pipe properly till it smoulders into flames). He loves his grandson dearly and cannot bear the thought of being separated from him. Although he is hurt
by his sons departure from the family and after his daughter-in-laws death, is dedicated to taking care of Rory. He is delightfully funny. He is often
repeating phrases and is able to surprise the reader in some instances as for example the incidence when he hit the bully unconscious inPerthrailway
station and stole a car.

He is a young boy, still in school who is dedicated to taking care of his aging grandfather. Shows determination and courage even in desperate situations
(when the grandfather is admitted in Rachnadar). Mature, he understands why his grandfather refuses to meet his own father. He has a rich inner life
and capable of growing and changing. He has managed by adapting to every new situation with hope and optimism.

Minor Characters
Val Jessup
She is a young and eager social worker who is responsible for Rorys well being. She is also very responsible, she is anxious that Granda receives his full
pension benefits and arranges for Rory to stay at the childrens home inCastle Street.

Mrs Foley

She is Rorys teacher who is keenly aware of his inability to pass up his homework because of his duty to care for his grandfather. She is very concerned
when Granda is admitted into the hospital and realises that Rory should not be in the childrens home.

Darren is Rorys best friend in school who helps him to stay in the mothers caravan when Granda is taken away from Rachnadar.

Jeff McIntosh He is Rorys father. He comes back home to be with his father and son when he sees them on television.

The novel is seen through the eyes of Rory. We as the readers get access to his young mind how he thinks, feels and reacts and at the same time we can
appreciate Rorys growth and maturation because the first person narration has made it possible for an inside view of Rorys mind.

The journey and the escape It symbolises the desired freedom and that both need to be together.

The caravan

It gives the idea or feeling of safety, privacy and security; both feel very safe in the caravans until it is time to run again.

Movies and movie stars

They refer to Grandas constant memory of what he likes

and remembers best . Here they are always tending to verge on an element of fantasy.

Bridging the generation gap
There is a young boys love for his aging grandfather. The novel explores key issues that young boys of this age may confront as their characters are
shaped by relationships around them. There are challenges of growing up and learning about responsibility shown in the life of Rory. Rory is eleven years
old and he should be playing football and enjoying being a boy but he has the big responsibility of keeping Granda safe and away from Rachnadar.
Granda looked after him in those days and now he knows it is his duty to look after him now. Rory accepts that responsibility with a great attitude and
does not hesitate to do his duty. But from being just a student, Rory grows up within a short frame of time to make decisions and to act with great

Family and relationships

There is a journey of love and protection between a grandfather and his grandson. Love, compression and family relationships are portrayed through
their actions. Granda and Rory love each other and that guides all their actions. Granda loves his son, Jeff but feels let down by what happened years ago.
He loves Rorys mother dearly too. Granda looked after Rory before and now Rory wants to look after his Granda. That is family love.

p Social and civic responsibilities

How society tries to intervene and help those who they think are unfairly treated or who they think deserve a better treatment. The novel emphasizes the
importance of social responsibility. Doctor Nicol, the teacher, Mrs. Foley, Darrens mum and Val Jessup feel that Rory need help at home and that he
should be enjoying his boyhood and not be burdened with the responsibility of looking after an ageing and ailing grandfather. The police officials and the
nurses are seen as kind and compassionate. The inmates at the childrens home too care about what is happening to Rory and want to help him.
Members of the public believe strongly that the two should not be separated and voice their opinion on television. The great escape would not be possible
without the support and help of the public. Thus society has a great role to play in molding people to be what they are.

Social bias
How society is quick to decide what the aged and ailing as well as the young should betreated.The social welfare service sees to the very young and the
very old. The decision of the authorities is not always right and should be questioned. Ruby the traveler complain that social workers check on Tyrone to
see if he is getting his education and is not being abused in any way . The authorities can be nasty to the gypsies and people on the fringes of society. The
police bring fear and anxiety but they are also seen as being compassionate in their dealings with Rory. The authorities chase after Rory and Granda but
the public is mainly on their side and people help them all the way.

Moral Values:

Family relationships and bonds must be appreciated and maintained. There must be compassion and kindness.
Communication is an important feature among friends and family members. It results in the loving and caring attitude generally.
Trust is a vital component in bridging generations. We must not be judgmental as appearances may not be what they seem.