Wow, this book is outstanding. I couldn’t put it down! As someone who is in her thirties, I wondered whether this book would be too young and the writing immature, but this wasn’t the case at all. This is an intelligent and sensitively written story about two friends, Callum, a white-skinned nought and Sephy a dark-skinned Cross and their relationship as they grow up. How society and the prejudices around them moulds them into people they don’t really want to be. It’s a story filled with tragedy and sorrow but also love and friendship. The story is narrated by both Sephy and Callum alternating with each chapter and allows us to see their very different worlds through their eyes.
As a teenager this book would have rocked my world! As much as Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou and The Colour Purple by Alice Walker did as an adult. The frustration and anger felt at the injustice of prejudice spawned from just the colour of a persons skin never left me while reading this book. The black and white racism issue is turned upside down and the dark-skinned Crosses rule over the white-skinned noughts and treat them like inferior beings. It shows how inequality and prejudice can force people into roles they do not want to be in and actions they don’t want to take. This is a seriously thought provoking book and sometimes harsh as the two worlds of Sephy and Callum collide. It is at times heartbreaking, but even with all the sorrow the story is incredibly well paced and I was pulled along with each chapter.
The content is brutal, but it has to be for the story to be authentic. It is also honest and doesn’t hide from the fact that the consequences of racism and prejudice can create evil in the form of terrorism. A tale of race and equality, never patronising to it’s target audience and giving us no answers to a world that’s unforgiving and cruel. The ending is powerful, beautiful and devastating and I cried like a baby.
What can I say that I already haven’t said. This is a remarkable novel; brilliantly written with complex characters, moving and thought provoking, full of pain, love and passion. I absolutely loved it and can’t wait to read the rest in the series. I highly recommend this book!
BOOKS IN SERIES ORDER
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