Thursday, 30 July 2015

Review: Harry Mac by Russell Eldridge

South Africa in 1960 is the setting of this coming-of-age tale written by South African born but now Australian citizen Russell Eldridge. Tom lives in a quiet street with his family, which includes his dad, a controversial and outspoken newspaper editor. When Tom overhears a conversation between his father and another man, plotting to assassinate the prime minister, he begins to question everything he knows about his father, and with the help of his childhood friend Millie, and her father, the peace loving Sol, he begins to ask questions about the scary world of South African politics--where everyone has a secret and an agenda--that is unfolding in front of him.

More of a backdrop for showcasing a shocking time in South African politics--where people were separated based upon their ethnic background (or even their perceived ethnic background,) than a story of a young boy, Harry Mac is entertaining and frightening in equal parts. The author does well in showing that there may be more to a person than what appears on the surface (at least one key character is keeping a surprising secret,) and that the truth may not always be obvious.

Recommended.

Thank you to Allen & Unwin and The Reading Room for my copy.

This book was read as part of the Aussie Author Challenge 2015.