Peekay is a young English boy brutalized at a South African boarding school when World War II breaks out. The prejudices, indignities and suffering Peekay endures become a light that fuels an inner drive to become something stronger and smarter and more important. With help from some fantastic characters along the way, Peekay is able to harness “the power of one” and succeed beyond all the odds.
The book is a marvel on so many levels. First, Courtenay does a wonderful job of incorporating history, childhood angst and amazing characters into a well-thought out and terrific story line that leaves the reader cheering for young Peekay. Second, the author’s theme of discrimination is well-played out from the Boers vs. the English, the Germans vs. the Jews, the South Africans vs. the Germans and of course, the white Africans vs. the Black Africans. The perspective is poignant and insightful.
This was a five star book that shed light on inter-human tensions and those beautiful souls who can rise above it to help and love their fellow man.
5 stars (out of 5)
Published in 1989