We want to help create motivated and engaged young readers. This blog is about children's and YA literature (especially New Zealand), literacy research, and ways to get, and keep, kids reading.
Out of Shadows is set in Zimbabwe, Africa in the early 1980's after the War of Independence when Robert Mugabe had just come into power.
Robert, from England, comes to a boarding school in Zimbabwe where he is encouraged by his father to help start a hopeful future for racial tolerance. He is introduced to a black boy, Nelson, and they become friends. As his secondary school years progress through the book, Robert is bullied and taunted for being friends with Nelson, he watches his friend being bullied and he has to make decisions about how he will behave to this.
He is torn between his acceptance of racial differences and his sympathy for the colonial whites after witnessing land seizures by the government.
It is a story of needing to belong and the question of how much does one conform and condone unacceptable behaviour to get that sense of belonging? Keeps you thinking after you have finished reading it.
Flickr image by klugi
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