Joshua lives with his mother and step-father in Amarias, an isolated town, where all the houses are brand new. Amarias is surrounded by a high wall, guarded by soldiers, which can only be crossed through a heavily fortified checkpoint. Joshua has been taught that the Wall is the only thing keeping his people safe from a brutal and unforgiving enemy. One day, Joshua stumbles across a tunnel that leads underneath the Wall. The chance to catch a glimpse of life on the other side of The Wall is too tempting to resist. He's heard plenty of stories about the other side, but nothing has prepared him for what he finds…Set in a tense reality closely mirroring Israel's West bank, this deeply affecting parable of a boy who undertakes a short journey to another world lingers long after completion.
©2013 William Sutcliffe (P)2013 Audible Inc.
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"A Gripping Story"
A view of life through an adolescent's eye
I was thoroughly engaged. I found myself laughing out loud and on occasion crying.
He captured the adolescent voice perfectly
belief in essential goodness
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this book. It will stay with me for some time. My test of good writing is that it engenders emotion and this story does this and more. I couldn't stop listening
I was hugely impressed by this well balanced book, aimed at Young Adults, and with a hard hitting message. In my opinion, it managed to show both sides of the Israeli, Palestinian situation, how each fears the other and suffers as a result. (Although it never actually mentions these countries by name).
Joshua is a teenager, living in Amarias, with his mother and her new husband. His father died serving in the army, but Joshua never understood who he had been fighting against and his father made a point of never leaving the house in his uniform. Liev, Joshua's step-father, is a very different man, who has strong opinions about the threat posed by 'The Other Side'.
When Joshua's football goes over a wall into a building site, he climbs over to retrieve it and stumbles upon a tunnel that stretches beyond the wall into an area that represents The West Bank of Palestine. Of course he can't resist investigating and what he sees and learns from this and subsequent visits, will change him forever.
Not only does this book offer teenage readers a look at both sides, but the main character, Joshua, presents a good moral character, trying his very best to do what he feels is right, even when it is frightening, and even dangerous to do so. Unfortunately not all his actions have favourable outcomes and in this respect the story is very realistic. It reminded me very much of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, both were highly effective novels.
I should mention the excellent narrator, Nicholas Camm, who did an excellent job of reading this novel. Highly recommended to all ages, but particularly effective for teenagers.
aWhenm I started reading this, I was a little unsure of where it was going....
It was definetly based aon a real wall, but I could not place it. I thought maybe it was set in post war euope and the wall referred to the Berlin wall, but the further I read, the more obvious it became - and I will not ruin it by telling you where it is set!
Its a heart-wrenching tale of a young boy who does not understand war and a young girl and her family who do understand it - all too well!
Very well written! Although if I am being critical, I felt that the end was a little rushed.
"Carnegie Medal Shortlist"
Future, Hope, Peace
The final scene when Joshua decides what he wants to achieve in the future and how he is going to do it.
I didn't cry during the story but I was left with hope.
Brilliant book hope it wins the Carnegie Medal.
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