Journey To Jo'burg by Beverly Naidoo

The Lovereading4Kids comment

When it was originally published in 1985 Beverley Naidoo’s classic was a contemporary story; now it’s a piece of history but no less powerful or important. It’s the story of two black children who set off from their remote village to search for their mother and bring her home after their baby sister falls desperately ill. Setting off on foot on the long hot road to Jo’burg, Naledi and Tiro have no idea what’s in store for them as they cross the dangerous landscape of Apartheid. Written simply, to be accessible to those as young as 8, this universal story of children whose spirit won’t let injustice crush them continues to move all who read it. ~ Andrea Reece


Journey To Jo'burg by Beverly Naidoo

Frightened that their baby sister will die, 13-year-old Naledi and her young brother Tiro run away from their grandmother to find their mother, who works in Johannesburg as a maid. Their journey shows the realities of apartheid, pass laws, bantustans, racism, the breakdown of family life.

A deeply affecting modern classic about a brother and sister who journey through the South Africa of Apartheid in a race against time to find their mother thereby saving their poorly baby sister, Dineo.


This story is compelling TES

inspirational tale... Network

Growing awareness of the sufferings of South Africa's black children brings renewed point to Beverley Naidoo's Journey to Joburg, a story for young readers, the more searing for its gentleness, that makes them ask questions we must learn to answer. Guardian

About the Author

Beverly Naidoo
Beverly Naidoo, born May 20th, said, "I was born and brought up a 'Jo'burg girl' in what has been one of the world's most openly racist countries: South Africa. I was sent to a whites-only school. It was like being brought up to be a horse with blinkers. Luckily when I left school, I met people who challenged me and I was able to take off the blinkers. I began to feel very angry about the terrible things that I could see I was part of." Journey to Jo'Burg was banned in South Africa. The apartheid government in South Africa refused to let children read it until 1991.Beverley Naidoo researched No Turning Back in South Africa. The story is about a twelve-year-old boy who runs away to Jo'burg and joins streetchildren. Even though life on the street is dangerous, surviving there is better than living at home with a violent stepfather. Naidoo wanted to write about the courage of young black people who are determined to get rid of racism and apartheid.

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Book Info


96 pages
Interest Age: From 9


Beverly Naidoo
More books by Beverly Naidoo

Author's Website


HarperCollins Children's Books an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Publication date

3rd March 2008




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