This Page

has moved to a new address:


Sorry for the inconvenienceā€¦

Redirection provided by Blogger to WordPress Migration Service
cook*create*read: Review: The Boy Next Door by Irene Sabatini

Monday, February 16, 2015

Review: The Boy Next Door by Irene Sabatini

The Boy Next Door by Irene Sabatini
Published by Sceptre, 2010
Source: bought

Author's Website:  Irene Sabatini

The back blurb:
Two days after I turned fourteen the son of our neighbour set his stepmother alight. Or so Lindiwe Bishop believes, though eighteen months later the charges against Ian McKenzie are dropped and he returns home, full of charm and swagger. 

Intrigued, Lindiwe strikes up a covert friendship with the mysterious white boy next door. As a bond grows between them, they cannot foreseee how severely it will be tested in the years ahead - by secrets and by a world that wants nothing more than to divide them. 

Vividly evoking Zimbabwe's slide from independence into chaos, THE BOY NEXT DOOR tells an engrossing tale about what it means to witness, change, love and remain whole when all around you is falling apart.

The Boy Next Door is a perfectly satisfactory novel set against the turmoil of a country going through massive political change.  The story begins with Lindiwe, an awkward black teenager who falls for a white boy of questionable character and follows her through different points in her life as she grows up in a time of great political discontent.

I grew up in South Africa and I enjoyed much of this story as it brought back a lot of memories for me.  However, I was never able to fully connect with the main characters, and while I certainly felt sympathy for them, I somehow didn't care enough about them.  The relationship between Lindiwe and Ian seemed a little forced, not very natural and I just didn't believe in them as a couple.  But maybe that was a reflection of the politic strife going on around them, I don't know.  

So while this did not live up to the great hope I had for it, it is still an enjoyable read and provides some insight into the history of Rhodesia/Zimbabwe.  I would recommend this for anyone interested in dipping their toe into this time period.  

Irene Sabatini won the 2010 Orange Award for New Writers with this debut novel.  Her latest novel, Peace and Conflict, was published in November 2014 and I will probably pick this up at some point.

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Thank you for your lovely comments - always appreciated! :) x

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home