The Other Side of Truth

Carnegie Medal Winner
A novel about two young people who overnight become refugees…

Sade is slipping her English book into her schoolbag when Mama screams. Two sharp cracks splinter the air. She hears her father’s fierce cry, rising, falling.
‘No! No!’
The revving of a car and skidding of tyres smother his voice.

A shot. Two shots at the gate in the early morning and a car screeches away down an avenue of palm trees. A tragedy – and a terrible loss for Sade and her younger brother Femi, children of an outspoken Nigerian journalist. Now terror is all around them and they must flee their country. At once. And alone. Plans for their journey have to be hastily arranged. Everything must be done in secret. But once Sade and Femi reach England, they will be safe – won’t they?

Beverley Naidoo has struck home again, bringing together the critical themes of political oppression, exile, Africa and childhood. The Other Side of Truth has resonances of the execution of the Nigerian writer Ken Saro-Wiwa…. Not only a marvellous read but one that refuels the desire for justice and freedom within and beyond our shores.
– From the Foreword by Jon Snow of Channel 4

Totally gripping, somewhat shaming and entirely believable, this is an engrossing and thought-provoking read for 10-years-olds plus.
–Sunday Telegraph

Narrated with exceptional skill in a bracing, unadorned style…
– The Scotsman

…an unforgettable novel.
– The Times

Sankei Children's Book Award, Japan 2003

International Board on Books for Young People Honour Book, 2002

Jane Addams Book Award (older children category), USA 2002

American Library Association Booklist Top of the List, USA 2001

Carnegie Medal, UK Winner 2000

Smarties Book Prize Silver Medal, UK 2000

A Best Book for Young Adults American Library Association, USA 2001

Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, USA 2001

Arts Council Writer's Award for work-in-progress, UK 1999

Read the schoolsnet interview with Beverley Naidoo on The Other Side of Truth

Read Beverley Naidoo’s commentary on writing The Other Side of Truth

Read the Beverley Naidoo’s Carnegie Medal acceptance speech

Teachers! For some Key Stage 3 suggestions, including a strong focus on language, media and interviewing, click here.

Some contrasting covers