Pertinent, absorbing, enthralling,
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This review is from: The Wall (Paperback)
I found this novel absorbing and enthralling. I am a fan of Sutcliffe anyway, having loved New Boy and Are You Experienced?, but this is a very different, more grown up novel altogether, even though it's aimed, I guess, at a YA audience.
Joshua lives in Amarias near a big wall which he has never really thought about, even though the wall is part of his model play town that he keeps under his bed at home. One day he comes across a tunnel, and, being the sort of boy who likes adventure, he goes through the tunnel and meets a girl who saves him from a vicious beating by some lads who clearly recognise him as being from the wrong side of the wall. The book tells the story of how he tries to repay the girls kindness by tending her father's olive and lemon grove, which has been closed off by the wall, and the father is only allowed access to it once a month.
The book conveys the stifling heat and the stifling atmosphere of life on both sides of the wall incredibly well. I thought Sutciffe really got into the mind of a young lad. I know this book has been compared to Striped Pyjamas, and it does have some similarities, but I find it a more powerful and thought provoking read. Excellent.