Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow

Highly commended

Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow by Siobhan Curham

Fourteen-year-old Stevie lives in Lewes with her beloved vinyl collection, her mum … and her mum’s depression. When Stevie’s mum’s disability benefits are cut, Stevie and her mother are plunged into a life of poverty. But irrepressible Stevie is determined not to be beaten and she takes inspiration from the lyrics of her father’s 1980s record collection and dreams of a life as a musician. Then she meets Hafiz, a talented footballer and a Syrian refugee. Hafiz’s parents gave their life savings to buy Hafiz a safe passage to Europe; his journey has been anything but easy. Then he meets Stevie… As Stevie and Hafiz’s friendship grows, they encourage each other to believe in themselves and follow their dreams.


Nancy, Dorothy Stringer

28th January 2020 at 12:42 pm

I absolutely adored ‘Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow’, it was truly eye opening. It gave you a look at what is happening to people even in our city and it shows that no matter who you are you can find smeone who you click with. One of my favourite things about the book was the fact it dealt will real life issues like depression and being a refugee without sugar coating them. It gave me a real understanding, I’m so grateful for that. These are only few of the reasons I loved the book!

Nimrod, Downlands Community School

26th January 2020 at 12:22 pm

This book was intriguing and captivating, and I found it an easy read. Throughout points, I recognised fairly elementary language, and I thought a nice extended metaphor or more emotive language could really give it some oomph. However, saying that, I also like how raw and from-the-heart the book is, and would recommend it. It dealt with very current affairs and put things into perspective for me, and that is a quality I appreciate in a book. A very enjoyable story, and heartwarming too.

Yosola – Benenden

23rd January 2020 at 1:44 pm

I loved the book and the characters. The friendship with Stevie and Hafiz was so nice and it teaches people to be nice to one another.

Amelia, Benenden

23rd January 2020 at 10:53 am

This book had quite a slow start but got more and more interesting in the middle. I enjoyed the plot and it used a lot of emotive language to convey the relationship between the two characters, Stevie, who lived with her mother who suffered from depression, and Hafiz who was a refugee from Syria.

Rose, Dorothy Stringer

21st January 2020 at 12:17 pm

I found this a very engaging read. The story of both Stevie and Hafiz were moving. I really enjoyed both stories colliding and how it really explains about the reality of the world we live in. The writer really gets deep into your emotions and uses their words to grip you in. I really recommend reading this book as it is one of a kind.

Nathanael, Dorothy Stringer

16th January 2020 at 1:10 pm

‘Don’t stop thinking about Tomorrow’ was an intelligent, and careful look into the lives of two people that find a firm friendship in their differences and similarities alike, going on an emotional journey where they learn about each other and themselves; and the experiences that have shaped them and the paths that their lives have taken. The protagonists symbolise two types of strong people, Stevie, a girl that has lost her father and feels that she is losing her mother, who stays strong and supports them throughout her many trials and tribulations, and never loses the glimmer of hope that things will get better. And Hafiz, a Syrian refugee fleeing danger in his own country and discovering a new world of anxiety, concern and unknown outcomes, a world of ‘what ifs?’. A world where he might never see his parents again, or might not fit in to his new country. An excellent book, and a satisfying outcome. I would definitely recommend this.

Tiffany, Lancing College

15th January 2020 at 5:55 pm

I really enjoyed reading this book, as it talks about a girl called Stevie and her mum who suffers from depression. It explains what the girl plans to do about it and how someone can change your life. Later on in the story Stevie meets a talented footballer named Hafiz who is a Syrian refugee. Throughout the story it shows how their friendship grew and how they help each other out. Overall this book was very deep and relevant to everyone today.

Tiffany, Lancing College

15th January 2020 at 5:31 pm

I really enjoyed reading this book since it shows you how someone can change your life. It has a really deep meaning behind it and could be relevant to lots of people today. This book talks about Stevie’s mum’s depression and how the girl deals with it along with poverty. Later on in the story she meets a talented footballer, Hafiz who is also a Syrian Refugee. Throughout the story as Stevie and Hafiz’s friendship grow, they both start to believe in themselves more and follow their dreams.

Emily, Peacehaven

14th January 2020 at 12:24 pm

This book is one of my favourites. I like the different perspective of the characters and how it flicks between them. The storyline is unique and I like that it wasn’t cringey or cheesy like some teen novels are. It has solid, real-life problems. I would 100% recommend it.

Ella, Ardingly

9th January 2020 at 9:42 am

I really enjoyed reading the book ‘Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow’ because I loved the way that it incorporates music into the book to show Stevie’s love for music. I also like how Stevie and Hafiz encourage each over to achieve their very best, it is a great book about friendship!

Olivia, Hove Park

24th December 2019 at 11:09 am

This book is unique because the point of view changes between each character. It’s good for anybody with a love for music or football and who believes in the power of friendship. By reading this, you could gain the understanding of the character’s experiences, like a refugee or a young carer.

Emily, Ardingly

23rd December 2019 at 1:58 pm

Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow.

Out of all the books I have read from the selection this one was by far my favourite. I found it interesting learning about how differently people’s lives can be as I myself have never really thought about other people and how terrible their lives can be. It made me realize that we all live in this bubble here at Ardingly and since we don’t have to go through the terrible stuff we can’t empathise as much.

Nathaniel, Ardingly

8th December 2019 at 9:09 pm

I think this book really touched me as one of my family members has suffered with depression, and I think Stevie was a great character which really connected with me. I also liked how they connected the unlikely duo of football and music. I would recommend it to my age group.

Monty, Ardingly

8th December 2019 at 8:26 pm

After reading this book I was mildly disappointed, I enjoyed the start of it and enjoyed whenever Hafiz appeared, however I found Stevie’s side of the story very depressing and dreaded reading the book. I thought that the idea of making Hafiz a talented footballer is very clever and it resonates with passionate sports people like myself. I also enjoyed the refuge centre and hearing the stories of the ladies working there. Overall I thought some of the book was very good but in contrast others were not so good; worth a read if you take it slowly.

Alice, Ardingly

8th December 2019 at 8:23 pm

I think that ‘Don’t stop Thinking About tomorrow’ was a really lovely read. It was a sweet book because of the amazing and wonderful friendship that was made by Stevie and Hafiz. I love the constant mention of music, I loved jamming out to the songs mentioned whilst reading the book. I thought it was a really clever idea for the author to mention the songs. I’ve never read a book quite like this one! Stevie has to be my favourite character as she was such a strong and kind girl, she knew at such an early age how to fend for herself which I was amazed by. This book shone a light to what life is like for many around Britain. I 100% recommend this book to anyone who can read!

Annabelle, Ardingly

8th December 2019 at 8:19 pm

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I found it easy to get stuck into and loved the storyline. I just wanted it to carry on once I had finished.
I loved Stevie’s character and love of music which I found involved the reader, quite often relating to the present day.
I liked how Hafiz’s character and Stevie’s worked so nicely together and how they found that their stories weren’t so different after all.
A very enjoyable book to read.

Sophie, Ardingly

6th December 2019 at 11:59 am

I really enjoyed this book as I feel that the whole book is written based on hope and music. Both Stevie and Hafiz are strong characters that use hope to carry on when times get tough. In Stevie’s case her mother has severe depression and anxiety and in Hafiz’s case he had experienced war in Syria and for that reason he travelled all the way over to the UK taking huge risks and facing tragic situations as a result of it. As children both Stevie and Hafiz shouldn’t be facing these issues in such emotionally challenging circumstances, however they persist and get through the turmoil, that leads to a much brighter future.
Stevie is an incredible human being as she cares for her mother and earns money to put food on the table, although this doesn’t go without its sacrifices. Stevie uses music to help her get through these difficult times and Hafiz uses football, both things show these two people great hope and allows them to keep going. Hafiz is also such a strong character as he had fled his home away from war and his parents to come live in a unaccepting society. Leaving his loved ones behind to start a new life in a new place, Hafiz meets Stevie and both of their lives change for the better.
I would thoroughly recommend this book to anyone who loves music. It is insightful and empathetic and I learnt a lot from these 2 people.

Jessica, SRWA

26th November 2019 at 1:13 pm

I loved this book because I could relate to the surroundings. I instantly recognised the red and yellow music store- GAK. It was interesting seeing how other less fortunate live. 10/10

Oliver, SRWA

26th November 2019 at 1:12 pm

I thoroughly enjoyed this book as it was interesting as despite the story being diverted between two characters (Stevie and Hafiz) the story has an even amount of both of them, unlike other stories set out like this. It is also in present tense, which is unusual and makes you feel more like part of the story somehow. However, saying all this, it is rather slow-starting and at times confusing. Not the best book ever, but worth a read.

Archie, SRWA

26th November 2019 at 1:11 pm

I loved this book; I thought that it was a way of showing two very big problems in one amazing book. It is all very current. I have heard a lot of facts on these subjects and they are truly scary. I like the way it got incredibly interesting.

Sophie, Hurst

20th November 2019 at 8:55 am

Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow: I think it’s a very heart warming book as it’s about saving each other. They find each other and support each other, which is a really nice story line, and I found it really enjoyable.

Nicholas, SRWA

19th November 2019 at 1:16 pm

I thoroughly enjoyed this book as it was interesting as despite the story being diverted between two characters (Stevie and Hafiz) the story has an even amount of both of them, unlike other stories set out like this. It is also in present tense, which is unusual and makes you feel more like part of the story somehow. However, saying all this, it is rather slow-starting and at times confusing. Not the best book ever, but worth a read 🙂


19th November 2019 at 1:05 pm

This was a very good book. I think that it needs a sequel. Also, with it being set locally, I understood the book better and could visualise the setting more easily. The characters are well composed adding to the emotion of the story.

Ayla, Downlands School

19th October 2019 at 10:59 pm

Don’t Stop Thinking About Tommow is one of my favourite books to ever have read. Its such a beautiful story that gets you captivated from the front page. I love it showing so much on refugees: it helps people who don’t know much about it get what it’s like to have to start a new life again in a new language, new country and making new friends.

Tabitha, Dorothy Stringer School

15th October 2019 at 12:48 pm

‘Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow’ is an excellent example of how friendship, however much of a cliche it may be, can help you through even the most difficult of situations. The story starts by introducing Stevie- a girl whose mother is facing deep depression, and Hafiz- a refugee from Syria. Both have their individual issues and already, as a reader, I was entirely emotionally invested in their stories, loathe to put the book down from page one. Throughout the story, usually isolated Stevie befriends Hafiz and they help each other to lead their own lives and overcome all their worries to believe in themselves. It’s an amazingly important message and delivered in an extremely clever way.

Clara, Downlands

29th September 2019 at 11:29 am

It was a fast paced and easy to read novel, with a plot relevant to issues in society today. I enjoyed how it was set in places I recognise. It was immersive and the characters were well developed and identifiable.

Laura, Ardingly

26th September 2019 at 7:31 pm

I really enjoyed this book. It was moving and inspiring at the same time and written in a way that makes you want to read on. When I first picked up the book, I was sceptical because a lot of it was about music which isn’t really my thing. However, I don’t think I could have enjoyed it more and I am very glad I read it. I think that the character of Stevie being so strong through her Mum’s depression perfectly matches the character of Hafiz who has been through a lot and yet is still hopeful. The story holds a powerful message of never giving up, even when things get really tough. It also shows how having a friend who you are open to can change your life and I think that this is very true. Finally, I really like the way the story is set out telling it from first Stevie then Hafiz’s view as you get a deeper understanding of each of the characters.

Agatha, Ardingly

26th September 2019 at 3:49 pm

I really enjoyed the fact that the book was relevant to us, and shows people how horrible some people’s lifestyles are. It raises empathy, which I felt throughout the story. I liked the way that Stevie seems so different to all the other kids but she is actually just like any person and it makes us see that we are all different and it is fine to be, It’s completely normal. I enjoyed seeing the way that the two main characters came together (became good friends) and showed their school that they should help, as we should help.

Tom, Hurstpierpoint College

31st August 2019 at 2:55 pm

I loved this book because it was so relevant to current affairs and is quite thought provoking and yet is still light enough to enjoy reading. The ending is very satisfying. I also like the way that the characters develop throughout the book.

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