It isn’t far into their Clean Getaway that William (aka Scoob) begins to worry. Although he loves his G’ma, and there’s a sense of desperado in the pair riding off without letting his Dad know, G’ma is behaving out of character. For a start, she’s arrived in a camper van that she informs him is her new home. Where’s the home that he loved with the rope swing in the front yard? Furthermore she’s handed Scoob her precious Treasure Box, the one that was strictly ‘off-limits’.
Thereafter there are her tears, and the fact that this journey feels like something of a vigil for Jimmy, the grandfather who Scoob never knew. All he knows is that his father refuses to discuss Jimmy, and the high standards he sets for Scoob are to do with Jimmy dying in prison. Suddenly, Scoob is discovering Jimmy alongside learning of the past he shared with G’ma, before Scoob’s Dad was born.
Yet what is the motivation? Furthermore, why is G’ma changing the camper van registration plates and not acknowledging Dad’s constant text messages? What is going on?
Clean Getaway is a road trip, family narrative and national history. Also, subtly, Nic Stone reminds us just how unreliable our memories and stories might be. Why was Scoob suspended from school? Has anyone sought to discover the real reasons? Thereafter, what really happened to Jimmy?