Beyond Safe Boundaries

Margaret Sacks, Author
Margaret Sacks, Author Dutton Books $13.95 (16p) ISBN 978-0-525-67281-4
Reviewed on: 06/01/1989
Release date: 06/01/1989
Set in South Africa during the '50s, this extraordinary first novel offers a vivid, authentic rendering of political turmoil and its effect on a Jewish family. For her first 13 years, Elizabeth Kahn has lived a sheltered life, enjoying the privileges afforded to children of her class. Tension builds when sister Evie joins an anti-government group and becomes involved with Willem, son of a ``Colored'' man. As Elizabeth is exposed to her sister's radical ideas, she becomes aware of social problems that exist beyond the safe boundaries of home. By the end of the novel, she has witnessed violence from all factions and has realized that eventually, she, like so many others, may feel compelled to leave her country. Although Sacks most thoroughly explores the lives of white Europeans, she presents other citizens (Africans, Indians, Afrikaners) with precision and understanding. Her ability to define characters, build suspense and expose inner conflicts is remarkable. Readers will be moved by her sensitive treatment of a controversial topic and will long remember the images conjured throughout this book. Ages 12-up. (May)
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