The Other Side of Truth

by Beverley Naidoo

On the opening page of this riveting novel, 12-year-old Sade’s mother is murdered,... read more

On the opening page of this riveting novel, 12-year-old Sade’s mother is murdered, the victim of a corrupt Nigerian government that is seeking to prevent Sade’s journalist father from writing about the oppression there. Little more than 24 hours later, Sade and her ten-year-old brother, Femi, are alone on the streets of London. They were smuggled out of Nigeria for their own safety. But the plans to deliver them into their uncle’s care have gone terribly wrong. They are exiles, perhaps even orphans, and numb with grief. They end up in the foster care system, where adults genuinely want to help them. Yet Sade knows — for their own safety and the safety of their father, who may or may not have escaped — that she can’t reveal who she and her brother really are. Then Sade learns that her father is in London. He escaped from Nigeria under a false name. Now the Nigerian government claims he murdered his wife, and the British government is holding him for extradition. What lengths will Sade go to persuade people of the truth? All that her father and mother taught her haunts, and eventually fortifies, Sade as she feels her way through life as a refugee. Beverley Naidoo’s moving novel works on multiple levels, from its bracing indictment of political corruption and oppression to its portrait of two children reeling from grief and shocking change. The story ends with Sade and Femi reunited with their father. (Ages 11–14)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2002

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