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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fiction comes no better than this
This is without doubt one of the best novels I've ever read and one that has stayed with me down the years since reading it as a child ( when it was first published). The fact that Robert Swindells managed to write a childrens book about a terrifyingly adult subject without pandering to sentimentality in order to cossett the books intended readership is a testament to...
Published on 30 Dec 1999 by darklordzden

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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Deep stuff for teenagers!
In stories which start with the end of the world, the protagonist is usually a person who escapes the cataclysm by some unusual twist of fate. However, this novel dares to break the pattern -teenage boy Danny Lodge, around whom this story is centred, is forced to live in the direct aftermath of a nuclear war, with a band of fellow survivors from his town, right in the...
Published on 7 Oct 2001


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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fiction comes no better than this, 30 Dec 1999
This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
This is without doubt one of the best novels I've ever read and one that has stayed with me down the years since reading it as a child ( when it was first published). The fact that Robert Swindells managed to write a childrens book about a terrifyingly adult subject without pandering to sentimentality in order to cossett the books intended readership is a testament to his skill as a writer. His evocation of a dying post Nuclear war "civilisation" in northern England is alternately touching and turbulent and stands alongside "adult" novels such as Russell Hobans "Riddley Walker" and Pat Franks "Alas Babylon" in it's vista's of compassion and humanity in the face of the unthinkable. Parents of more sensitive children should be warned, this is a tough unflinching book about the consequences of war and violence. Whether you're an adult or a child this will haunt you long after you've turned the final devastating page. It's haunted me since my final year at primary school ( I'm now in my mid-twenties ) and offhand I can only think of a couple of other books that have ever done that.
A masterwork that sits on a pedestal only with William Goldings "Lord Of The Flies" as an example of the power of beautifully executed children's writing
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good book, and would suggest to someone., 4 Feb 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
I have just recently read this book (4.2.00) and I really really loved it. I found the descriptions very good and vocabulary and language suited me. I am only thirteen years of age therefore some vocabulary that I find tricky, someone else might find easy. I could actually picture the places and scenes that were written and found this book a real page - turner. I will give a brief synopsis of the book, but don't worry, I won't give anything away. It is about this boy who lives through a nuclear holocaust and has to keep his brother and himself alive. He loses his mother and father and therefore some emotions are brought into the story. So anyone who wants a good read or a person my age who wants to read an adult type book this would be an excellent starting point.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not for "Nibblers", 22 Mar 2001
This book, although fewer than 200 pages, is not for those who just want a light read. BROTHER IN THE LAND takes a long hard look at human nature in the face of catastrophe. Danny Lodge of Skipley is one of the "lucky" ones; he has survived a nuclear holocaust. This book tells, in Danny's words, about the aftermath in and around Skipley in northern England. It's incredibly moving and there's even a little romance mixed in. It proves that, even in the aftermath of a disaster, people can still pull together and fight for what is right. READ THIS BOOK.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Deep stuff for teenagers!, 7 Oct 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
In stories which start with the end of the world, the protagonist is usually a person who escapes the cataclysm by some unusual twist of fate. However, this novel dares to break the pattern -teenage boy Danny Lodge, around whom this story is centred, is forced to live in the direct aftermath of a nuclear war, with a band of fellow survivors from his town, right in the middle of the devastation ... and the radiation.
The book packs plenty of punches. We read about the loss of loved ones, ever-increasing hunger, radiation sickness leading to death, man's inhumanity to man in the fight to survive, and worst of all, fears about mutation - whether mankind will be able to give birth to normal human beings again.
On the brighter side, there's a love story that runs through the book. Also, an interesting sub-plot involving a second surviving community, one dressed in anti-radiation suits and carrying guns.
Swindell succeeds in painting a very gloomy picture, and I found myself wondering how this book was going to come up with an ending that would make the telling of the story worthwhile. It does manage to, but only just. Make no mistake, this is bleak stuff, almost disturbing stuff, and I don't think I'll ever read it twice. However, I *am* glad I read it once, and Swindells is to be admired for daring to write something of such depth for a teenage audience.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading, 25 Mar 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
This is one of my favourite books of all time. Having picked it up in the school library at the age of 14, because I liked the cover, I couldn't put it down again. I bought the book at the age of 21, and still read it regularly at the age of 25. I can't really say how touching it is, you need to read it for yourself and keep the kleenex handy...
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Holy Grail, 14 Aug 2004
By 
S. Johnson "nearly_all_gone" (Bed(fordshire), UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
Forgive the hyperbole of the title, but I have searched for this book for about 6 years since first reading it as a teenager and then forgetting the title. All I can tell you is that I was not dissapointed. This is a phenomenal emotionally-charged novel which altered my perceptions of life and death irrevocably. This is a book for anyone who questions society, human nature or the will to survive. I am a graduate of English Literature, and I can honestly claim this as my favourite ever book.
I urge parents to buy this for their children, and to borrow it when they've finished it! As a prior reviewer noted (much to my delight), this book is a proscribed text in certain English courses. I can't imagine how difficult it would be to study this for weeks on end - personally, the day it finally arrived was spent consuming every page. I read it again a week or so later, and was still moved, shocked and inspired by it. This harrowing account of a child becoming a man through the greatest of tragedies, and the human spirit's continuation in even the bleakest circumstances shall remain with me for the rest of my life.
Thank you Robert Swindells!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good, 4 Jan 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
This book is extremely good yet distressing at the same time. It is the story of a young boy who was one of the unlucky ones, he survied a nuclear war. This book tells the story of the boy and his survival. It is an incredibly sad ending to.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In my all time top ten, 11 May 2007
By 
lilysmum "lilysmum65" (uk) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
This is a fabulous book. I've read it time and time again with classes and always got something new out of it. It has a moving ending that always has me on the verge of tears, and half the kids too. I love the stunned silence you get in class when you have read the final chapters. It has so many themes to discuss.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very moving, 16 April 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
i was in tears at the end of this book and i think robert swindells is brilliant at capturing that sadness. a very good read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Swindles' best novel in my opinion, 30 Jan 2008
By 
ossian (fife, scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) (Paperback)
This is a harrowing read for teenagers, but thankfully never becomes overtly disturbing. i read this when i was 12 and loved it.
The after-effects of a nuclear war are depicted realisically- from the radiation sickness and birth defects, to the terrible struggle to survive. The main character's love for Kim and the kindness of other humans adds light to an otherwise relentlessly grim story.
I would have to say this is not the most original story- at the time such post-apocalypse fiction was common. However, "Brother in the Land" stands out as a very well writen example of cold-war fiction for teenagers.
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Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction)
Brother in the Land (Puffin Teenage Fiction) by Robert Swindells (Paperback - 1 Dec 1994)
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