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Longlisted for the Carnegie Medal 2014 - Longlisted for the 2013 Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize
A moving and thought provoking story which will encourage readers to question divisions in society. Joshua lives safely on one side of the Wall. When he finds a tunnel under the Wall he can’t help wanting to explore. Meeting a family on the other side reveals to him what the Wall hides and makes him question all he has previously been told. Joshua learns the enormity of living under repression as well as what kindness, despite its attendant dangers, really means. He also learns how nature can heal other ills as he sets out on his own journey of discovery.
The Wall is a novel about a boy who undertakes a short journey to another world, to a place where everything he knows about loyalty, identity and justice is turned upside down. It is also a political fable that powerfully evokes the realities of life on the West Bank, telling the story of a Settler child who finds there are two sides to every story.
Joshua is thirteen. He lives with his mother and stepfather in Amarias, an isolated town on top of a hill, where all the houses are brand new. At the edge of Amarias is a high wall, guarded by soldiers, which can only be crossed through a heavily fortified checkpoint. Joshua has been taught that beyond the concrete is a brutal and unforgiving enemy, and that The Wall is the only thing keeping him and his people safe. One day, looking for a lost football, Joshua stumbles across a tunnel which leads towards this forbidden territory. He knows he won't get another opportunity to see what is beyond The Wall until he's old enough for military service, and the chance to crawl through and solve the mystery is too tempting to resist. He's heard plenty of stories about the other side, but nothing has prepared him for what he finds...
A bold and important novel. Whatever your views of Israel and Palestine, reading The Wall - a moving portrait of private pain and tragic conflict - will make you think again A. D. Miller (author of Snowdrops)
A work with a lot of backbone, story writing skill, verve and integrity. A novel that is about justice and peace, and against colonialism and war ... a great achievement Raja Shehadeh
Overwhelming foreboding ... A beautifully crafted ... A powerful read Stylist
Startling and captivating ... This is not a novel of woolly moral equivalencies or easy solutions, but one that believes in empathy and redemption - and gives them a powerful heart -- Kamila Shamsie Guardian
A stylistic and thematic departure for Sutcliffe ... In The Wall, Sutcliffe successfully creates a world which is part parable, part classic children's tale -- David Stenhouse Scotland on Sunday
William Sutcliffe employs all this rites-of-passage symbolism with a very light touch, and crafts his novel with sustained suspense ... It makes for fast-paced, exciting reading ... The end is inspiring, delivering the spine chill that a good novel should, but in no way idealised -- Robin Yassin-Kassab Independent
Sutcliffe has an acute ear for dialogue, and the family conflicts are convincingly evoked ... An impressive piece of fiction - for adult or young readers -- Tom Sperlinger Times Literary Supplement
Publication date: 13/03/2014
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
|Publication date:||11th April 2013|
|Publisher:||Bloomsbury Publishing PLC|
|Suitable for:||13+ readers, YA readers|
William Sutcliffe is the author of five adult novels, including the international bestseller, Are You Experienced? His first novel for Young Adults, The Wall, was published in 2013 to much critical acclaim, including being shortlisted for the Guardian Fiction Prize. Circus of Thieves is his first novel for younger children. William lives in Edinburgh with his wife and three children. Photo credit Maggie O'FarrellMore About William Sutcliffe