Foreword by Archbishop Desmond Tutu
We are the young people,
We will not be broken!
We demand freedom
‘Away with slavery
In our land of Africa’
From ‘The Typewriter, 1976’
For almost fifty years apartheid forced the young people of South Africa to live apart as Blacks, Whites, Indians and ‘Coloureds’. This unique and dramatic collection of stories, set during and after apartheid, is about young people’s choices in a beautiful country made ugly by injustice. Each story is set in a different decade during the turbulent years from 1948 to 2000, and portrays powerful fictional characters who are caught up in very real and often disturbing events.
I was surprised by the intensity of my feelings as I read these stories, carefully crafted with such consummate skill and with such deft touches. The stories are taut and the tension and suspense become quite unbearable. Alfred Hitchcock would have been in his element… Most of what is described here no longer happens in the new South Africa… We must acknowledge that it happened… And I hope and pray that others in other lands may commit themselves to ensure that such evil will never be tolerated and that they will not be guilty of perpetrating it.
– from the Foreword by Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu
Contents Foreword by Archbishop Desmond Tutu The Dare - 1948 The Noose - 1955 One day, Lily, one day - 1960 The Typewriter - 1976 The Gun - 1985 The Playground - 1995 Out of Bounds - 2000 Time-line across Apartheid
There is a quiet dignity and compassion about the writing, and the stories are immensely moving.
– The Guardian
…a collection of short stories that astound with their feeling, their power to move… a beautifully written, thought-provoking book.
– The Observer
Naidoo honors her country’s past, present, and future with these brave tales.
– The Horn Book (starred review)
In less than 200 pages, Naidoo manages to chronicle pivotal events in an ongoing battle for freedom in South Africa and to encapsulate the enduring hope and unfailing spirit of its people.
– Publishers Weekly (starred review)
A Best Book for Young Adults, American Library Association, USA 2004 Riverbank Review Children's Book of Distinction, USA 2004 Jane Addams Peace Association Book Award for Older Children, USA 2004 African Studies Association Children's Africana Book Award for Older Readers, USA 2004 Parents' Choice Silver Honor Award, USA 2003