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on 23 November 2003
Normally I wouldn't bother writing reviews for stuff - there just isn't enough time in the day - but I've decided to make this an exception because the one review that has been written does it no justice whatsoever.

The Power of One is a great book (although the film, apart from Morgan Freeman, wasn't all that great). Tandia is far better.

Anybody who has read The Power of One will know that the hero of the book is a small, English, white boy nicknamed Peekay, (we never do find out his real name)living in South Africa. In Tandia, not only do we get to see Peekay as an adult, but we get a new heroine - Tandia.

Now of course, as you've probably guessed, there is going to be a bit of a love story in there. But it doesn't take over the whole story - it doesn't even start until towards the end of the book. The racism and injustice of South Africa is the main theme, but you still get a sense of how much the author loves the country, and is capable of seeing the good in it.

The greatest thing about Tandia is the characters; most are likeable, but all are flawed. Even our hero and heroine never descend into that mawkish 'too good to be true' territory. While Peekay is brave, stalwart and true (and good looking, which a hero should be if he can possibly help it) he is still naive and impractical. My own natural cynicism may add a little bias here, but just because you play by the rules, that is no reason to assume that everybody else will.

The names speak for themselves - brothel owner and former good time girl Mama Tequila, her equally corrupt and ruthless sister Madame Flame Flo, the German proffessor 'Doc', and a bodyguard and chauffeur going by the name of Juicy Fruit Mambo.

I should probably add a little parental guidance warning here - there is a hell of a lot of swearing, and one very graphic rape scene towards the beginning, but I can honestly say that I first read this when I was about 13 (though of course it has been re-read to the point where the gilt on the title has completely rubbed away - I now own a rather battered copy of 'ia') and any violence in the book is not gratuitous, but there for a reason. How else are we going to be able to grasp the cruelty, and pure capacity for evil that Geldenhuis possesses, if we are not subjected to this?

For me, the ending of a book is everything. If it ends badly, then it spoils the entire book for me (which is why, perhaps, I never read I Capture the Castle again), but this is one of the best endings I have ever read. It doesn't resolve everything, but the reader isn't left with that feeling that the book has been ended on a cliffhanger purely because the author was too lazy to think of a different one.

As you've probably guessed, I love this book to pieces, but if you are thinking of buying, I would recommend that you read The Power of One first, as not only is it a great book, but the storyline and the way that the characters develop will make a lot more sense.
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on 6 May 2002
Tandia is a sequal to the Power of One but stands up as a great novel in it's own right. There are two main charictors Tandia and Peekay. The book is in three parts, the first part tells Tandia's story - a heartrending tale of triamph over extreme adversity. The second part tells Peekay's ongoing story from the previous novel and the third is where their stories converge.
A great book about the South African troubles, suspicions and people. Information is gained from the story which is never anything but entertaining. The prose is evocotive and atmospheric. I would recommend this to anyone who likes a good story well told. If Bryce Cortenay reads this have you thought about furthering Tandia's story now so much has occured in South Africa?
Buy, read and pass to your friends!
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on 23 August 2002
If you read The Power of One you have got to read this!
Tandia is a heart renching story of a young mixed race girl growing up in a harsh African society.
Bryce Courtenays careful use of detail and in depth story lines make this an unmissable read.
The story of Peekay is continued from 'The Power of One' leading to a dramatic finale.
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on 10 June 2008
I read 'the Power of One' and found that I couldn't get enough of the moving, emotional story and hearty african tone. Tandia is an even more, deep, powerful story of struggle and survival that shocks and entices the reader with every page. The theme of love is explored on a different level to the last book and the story allows an insight into a different side of life in Africa.
This is a must read for people who loved the first book and who are looking for that fulfilling end to Peekays story.
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on 29 February 2008
Tandia (the follow up to The Power of One) arrived just in time for me to start reading it as soon as I had finished its predecessor ( a very, very good book by the way). I was a bit dubious about reading it to be honest (apart from the length I wondered whether it would be a weak cash in on the success of the first book) but I soon realised that once again Bryce Courtenay had created another compelling, very readable and challenging/disturbing work.

As the title suggests P.K. eventually becomes a supporting player and we see South Africa more and more through Tandia's eyes. The characters are once again strong and memorable and the threat of approaching tragedy is always looming making it a tenser read than its predecessor.

Although I have fonder memories of The Power of One this is a great novel and a more than worthy follow up.
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on 27 January 2010
This book is a gift.
The story of Peekey and his beloved Africa will stay with me forever. I don't usually write reviews but having finished this book yesterday night I feel compelled to say something.
Peekay's story gives hope and light in this dreary world, it's the triumph of love over hate, it's a magic tale and a lesson to all of us. It gives you wings to dream and to reach the impossible...
Through lovely characters, fully developed and each one with an important role in the story, we follow Peekey and his fight to make of South-Africa a better and a fairer place.
Please, if you have the chance, just buy "The Power of one" and its sequel "Tandia" together, and you'll start a journey you won't forget.
Thank you Bryce for giving us a Peekay to dream about.
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on 15 November 2001
The story, Tandia, is a great mix of love and compassion against hatred and predjudice. Tandia's hatred teamed with Peekay's compassion and hope for a new South Africa blend well together making this book a thoroughly entertaining read. In contrast to one reviewers opinion, the narrative in which the story is told holds the readers attention and gives an in depth, more meaningful insight to the "going-ons". However, this insight can be daunted by the wording which often mislead my thoughts and thwarted my comprehension of the book. Finally, if I were to be a prime minsiter of a country it would be law that the Power of One and Tandia must be read by all of my country for it's wonderful, un-putdownable entertainment and the essential life lessons to be gained from it.
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on 24 April 2012
An absolutely brilliant follow up to The Power of One. Only half way through the book and I find it a gripping read. If you have read The Power of One you must read Tandia.
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on 9 March 2006
I am very fussy when chosing a novel. I want something that draws me in right from the beginning, I want something where the sentences flow easily and I always want something that keeps me wanting to read more. A book that captures your imagination and makes you want to 'leave the housework' for much, much later so that you can read 'just one more' page is what I want and guys, THIS is that novel. As a young woman of mixed race myself, I really related to this novel and found the characters believable and really loveable. Read this novel, its everything you could ever ask for.
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on 19 November 2003
Tandia is the sequel to the more well known story of Bryce Courtney, 'The Power of One'. It is a very gripping novel with lots of action, as well as finding out what became of Peekay after his accident in the mine shaft at the end of 'The Power of One'. It tells the story of Tandia, a half Indian and half black girl growing up in South Africa in the height of apartheid. Although in parts it is rather graphic, this only serves to emphasise the reality of the oppressive apartheid regime, and by the end of the novel you really feel that you know the characters well. I definately recommend this book.
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