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This debut novel was inspired by the author’s work creating Run the World, an organisation that empowers women and girls from marginalised backgrounds through sport and storytelling and the authenticity of this, at times harrowing story, is palpably evident. As is the skill of the accomplished writing which makes great use of typography and layout to really make every word count. This speeds the reader through the narrative, but it also cuts deep to reveal the emotions experienced by our narrator.
Amber Rai is only ‘truly alive’ when running and shows great potential. But her alcoholic, abusive, misogynistic father refuses to allow her on the track. She has seen her older sister Ruby denied university and married off against her will and her downtrodden, abused mother is literally powerless to help, trapped as much by illiteracy and lack of English as the violence of her equally illiterate, unemployed husband. Amber has friends and teachers who believe in her, but she cannot explain what really goes on at home. She is a complex and believable character with very real flaws that she painfully recognises: ‘inflicting pain on others/halves your own hurt’.
But the story is cleverly structured on The Anatomy of a Revolution and inspired by her reading about revolutions for history, Amber, Ruby and her mother gradually empower each other to take small steps to freedom. This is an important, rewarding, highly empathetic read which, despite the dark subject matter, offers hope but no simplistic solutions.
I am restless, my feet need to fly.
Amber is trapped - by her father's rules, by his expectations, by her own fears. Now she's ready to fight - for her mother, for her sister, for herself.
Freedom always comes at a price. Run, Rebel is a trailblazing verse novel that thunders with rhythm, heart and soul - perfect for fans of Sarah Crossan, Elizabeth Acevedo and Rupi Kaur.
Closing date: 01/11/2020
Praise for Manjeet Mann’s Stage Work;
A powerful piece ArtsScene
Honest and raw Salisbury Journal
Touching and poignant FemaleArts
A justly furious rallying call WhatsOnBirmingham
Rhythmic and conversational BehindTheArras
Moving, inspiring and challenging Redbrick
Publication date: 05/03/2020
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
|Publication date:||5th March 2020|
|Publisher:||Penguin Books Ltd|
|Genres:||NewGen - YA Fiction, Family Drama, Poetry, Diverse Voices,|
|Categories:||Poetry (Children's / Teenage), Family & home stories (Children's / Teenage), School stories (Children's / Teenage), Personal & social issues: self-awareness & self-esteem (Children's / Teenage),|
Manjeet is an actress, playwright, screenwriter and director. She is the founder of Run The World - an organization that works with women and girls from marginalized backgrounds and helps to empower them through sport and storytelling. She lives in Kent.More About Manjeet Mann