cover image An Eye for Color

An Eye for Color

Norman Silver. Dutton Books, $14.99 (192pp) ISBN 978-0-525-44859-4

In this collection of interconnected stories set in Cape Town, 15-year-old Basil Kushenovitz faces the confusion and anxiety of adolescence while hoping to avoid his impending service in the South African army. He lurches toward manhood questioning just what it means to be a Jew and a member of a segregated and unjust society. With a steady voice that alternately teeters on the brinks of rage and despair, Basil tells of Hester, a neighbor girl who is reclassified as ``colored'' by the government and forced to leave an all-white school, and Amos, the black garden boy who is fired when it's learned that he can read and is attending night courses. Finally, Basil relates his plan born of quiet desperation as his military assignment approaches. Though lacking the sustained emotional tension of his novel No Tigers in Africa , Silver's work here takes his audience on a deeply thought-provoking journey into the sensitive soul of a young man. It's a trip readers won't soon forget. Ages 13-up. (Jan.)