You Will Be Safe Here

(2 customer reviews)

£8.99

A beautiful and heart-breaking story set in South Africa where two mothers – a century apart – must fight for their sons, unaware their fates are inextricably linked. Orange Free State, 1901. At the height of the Boer War, Sarah van der Watt and her six-year-old son Fred can only watch as the British burn their farm.

The polite invaders cart them off to Bloemfontein Concentration Camp promising you will be safe here. Johannesburg, 2010. Sixteen-year-old Willem is an outsider who just wants to be left alone with his Harry Potter books and Britney, his beloved pug.

Worried he’s turning out soft, his Ma and her new boyfriend send him to New Dawn Safari Camp, where they ‘make men out of boys.’ Guaranteed. The red earth of the veldt keeps countless secrets whether beaten by the blistering sun or stretching out beneath starlit stillness. But no secret can stay buried forever.

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Description

An Observer, Guardian, Financial Times, Sunday Times South Africa, Irish Times, Irish Independent, Big Issue and Strong Words Pick of the Year

An Irish Times and The Times Summer Reading Pick

Shortlisted for the Saltire Society Fiction Book of the Year Award

‘Beautifully written and emotionally devastating’ Daily Mail

A beautiful and heart-breaking story set in South Africa where two mothers – a century apart – must fight for their sons, unaware their fates are inextricably linked. Orange Free State, 1901. At the height of the Boer War, Sarah van der Watt and her six-year-old son Fred can only watch as the British burn their farm.

The polite invaders cart them off to Bloemfontein Concentration Camp promising you will be safe here. Johannesburg, 2010. Sixteen-year-old Willem is an outsider who just wants to be left alone with his Harry Potter books and Britney, his beloved pug.

Worried he’s turning out soft, his Ma and her new boyfriend send him to New Dawn Safari Camp, where they ‘make men out of boys.’ Guaranteed. The red earth of the veldt keeps countless secrets whether beaten by the blistering sun or stretching out beneath starlit stillness. But no secret can stay buried forever.

Additional information

Weight 0.5 kg
Dimensions 22.2 × 14 × 3 cm
ISBN

9781408886052

Author

Barr, Damian

Publisher

Bloomsbury

Format

Paperback

2 reviews for You Will Be Safe Here

  1. Kath Vlcek (verified owner)

    beautifully written, heart breaking story split across two periods of time in the same area of South Africa. I read it with my heart in my mouth, unable to put it down but almost not wanting to turn the page as I knew the storyline was building to a crescendo. Expertly told, definitely worth reading again and again.

  2. uriel walker

    I was vacillating between giving a three star or four star review but decided ultimately on the latter.

    There are three main story arcs within the book. The first two, concerning Sarah van der Watt and Rayna Brandt, were exceptionally well drawn.

    However, I felt the final arc was not as strong. I found myself, and I think this was primarily because of by a device deployed earlier in the book by the writer, not as involved. The immediacy was no longer there. It felt like, and at one point was exactly that, a history lesson. Some of the modern anachronisms jarred too, I found myself questioning these, which took me further out of the narrative.

    Overall I found it well written, but not as satisfying as I thought it was going to be when I began it, the extra star is for that initial promise.

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