Out of Shadows


Out of the Shadows‘ is set in newly-independent 1980’s Zimbabwe. Robert Mugabe has come to power offering an end to the ‘Old Way’ and promising hope to black Africans.  English boy Robert Jacklin is thrust into this turmoil when his idealistic diplomat father accepts a post in the Harare’s British Embassy. It is all new-  continent, country, school and school community.

Quickly,  Robert learns that for some of his white classmates, the sound of guns is still loud, and their battles rages.  The racist attitudes of many of the white minority are far from dissipated.  They live on in boys like Ivan, whom he encounters at the  school. Robert finds Ivan’s charisma irresistible. He is dragged into Ivan’s plans for outrageous revenge. Ivan wants things back to how they were, and he’s taking his fight to the very top.

Out of Shadows‘ is a powerful challenging young adult novel. It is like a news report, while being aimed fairly and squarely for an older reader. Bookwagon suggests that readers aged from 15 ears are best suited to this bold, brave book.

Winner of the Costa Children’s Award, the UKLA 12- 16 award and the Branford Boase Award


Out of Shadows

Jason Wallace


Out of Shadows‘ is a topical drama set in Zimbabwe in the years immediately after independence. It focuses on an English boy relocated to Zimbabwe and attending a prestigious boarding school after his idealistic diplomat father accepts a position at the British Embassy.  He is catapulted into the racial turmoil and violence of the newly-formed Mugabe regime, while struggling to adapt to a new environment. ‘Out of Shadows‘ is a powerful, challenging book, very much for the older reader sector – 15-plus age.

Winner of the Costa, UKLA and Branford Boase awards.


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