Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Out Of Shadows by Jason Wallace

‘For generations, Europeans have treated Africa like a playground. We’ve carved it up amongst ourselves, stolen its riches and not given a damn about the poor people who live here.’
~Page 4

Title: Out Of Shadows
Author: Jason Wallace
ISBN: 978-1849390484
Publisher: Andersen Press/2010
Pages: 320

Back Cover

Zimbabwe: 1980s -

The war is over, independence has been won and Robert Mugabe has come to power offering hope, land and freedom to black Africans. It is the end of the Old Way and the start of a promising new era.

For Robert Jacklin, it's all new: new continent, new country, new school. And very quickly he is forced to understand a new way of thinking, because for some of his classmates the sound of guns is still loud, and their battles rage on... white boys who want their old country back, not this new black African government.

Boys like Ivan.

Clever, cunning, wicked Ivan. For him, there is still one last battle to fight, and he's taking it right to the very top...


My views:

Out of Shadows is told from the point of view of Robert Jacklin. When he arrives in Zimbawbe, he is not too happy. Everything is new for him, the country, the school, friends. He feels so lost.
But he too gets adjusted slowly, pulled into a set of friends, who don't like the new way of thinking in the country. For them, racism still persists, guns are always out, torture is the way of life. Anarchy can't be wished away.

Robert knows right from wrong but he can't get away from Ivan and his friends. In the way of growing up. Robert is forced to choose. Most of the time, being in the wrong. He lets down the very person he was friends with. When he learns the darkest secrets of his so called friends, he knows he has to get away from his friends and do the right thing. But is it already too late?

We see Robert growing up in the five years that follows, both in body and his thinking. He can differentiate between right and wrong and go with what he knows is the righ path. Boys like Ivan can never understand that and, can never grow up.

Jason Wallace has shown us the ugliest side of the newly founded Zimbawe, where corruption persits. Killing is the norm. There is no difference between right and wrong.

On a personal note, one of my closest friends had lived in Zimbawe in that period. Sheused to tell us about the rampant anarchy going on and no one seemed to care. When one her relatives was bruttaly raped by three people, they left the country. She has very bad memories of those times.
I passed on the book to her and she told me she was crying halfway through the book. Maybe someday, I will post her thoughts about the book here.

It is not an easy read or a comfort readbut I will say it is a must read. It is the only way we can prevent something like this from happening in our parts of the world. By awareness and determination.

I posted the following few weeks ago. I do so now too. Just think about what it says:

If I stood you in front of a man, pressed a gun into your palm and told you to squeeze the trigger, would you do it?

No, sir.

Are you sure?

Of course, sir. No ways!

What if I then told you we'd gone back in time and his name was Adolf Hitler? Would you do it then?' Would you? Would you?

I'd want to ask him: Why?
~Page 277

This book arrived unsolicited, from the author. I am very glad he sent it to me.


pussreboots said...

Interesting teaser. Mine's from Bollywood Babes by Narinder Dhami.

Sullivan McPig said...

Sounds like a very heavy read, but interesting at that.

Unknown said...

Interesting teaser, but seems like a very difficult read.

Mine's from The Picture of Dorian Gray.

Yvonne said...

Very interesting teaser.

Manga Maniac said...

This looks like a very interesting read. Thanks for sharing.

My teaser is here Manga Maniac Cafe

Novroz said...

That's a heavy teaser. Thank you for stopping by earlier

Aimee said...

I've seen this teaser a couple of times now. Great teaser. My Teaser is here.

Julie said...

This gives a reader a lot to ponder. Quite similiar to my teaser today from Things Fall Apart.

Marce said...

Wow, this books sometimes make me angry or uncomfortable, don't know why. Thanks for sharing.

Gwendolyn B. said...

Very intense. Would you say this book is geared toward adults or teens? Either way, I'm putting it on my To Read list. Thanks for sharing.

fredamans said...

Sounds like a very deep an emotional read! Great teaser!


Lisa (Southern Girl Reads) said...

Most assuredly this is an amazing book. I'm happy that you received it and enjoyed reading it.

Cackleberry Homestead said...

How very true that teaser is. The book sounds really interesting. Thanks for sharing and stopping by my blog.

Marg said...

Sounds like fascinating and essential reading.

My teaser is from The Passage this week.

CMash said...

Profound teaser!!!

Stephanie said...

I really like the quote you chose -- it's so true. And I love what you said about awareness and determination!

Darlene said...

Interesting teaser. Sounds like heavy reading but good.