Publisher: Orchard Books
Bernard Ashley’s vivid portrayal of urban living, war, social issues, ethics and ideology has engaged readers for 40 years, and these elements combine in this tale of a family facing terrorist threats.
Fifteen-year-old Charlie’s parents are musicians who have become the target of Christian extremists from the fictitious Balkan country of Travonia. As the result of her experiences, his mother has suffered a breakdown and is in a care home, whilst his father and his band are on tour - and in danger. Meanwhile, Charlie himself is camping out at home, juggling visiting his mother with auditioning for a band, and keeping up the pretence to his grandparents that everything is fine.
Fast-paced and exciting, Ashley’s novel addresses a wide range of issues, inviting readers to reconsider behaviour and attitudes, particularly about violence, religion, race and mental health.