Thursday, 27 February 2020

Book Review: Run, Rebel by Manjeet Mann

Run, Rebel is a verse novel about Amber, a British Asian girl who's a keen runner whose father is abusive and is about to make her give up the sport because it's immodest. As she reads about revolutions in history lessons, they inspire her to push for a rebellion of her own, helping her mother to stand up to her father and breaking free from the life he wants for her of quiet submission and an arranged marriage like her sister.

Wow, wow, wow. This is an explosive debut from an incredibly talented poet who brings Amber brilliantly and brutally to life. It's a tough read because of the situation she's in, but between an especially supportive teacher and the other women in her family - I LOVE the relationships she has with her mother and her sister - there's also hope in this beautiful book. Manjeet Mann's poetic writing style is impactful and the sparseness of the verse on some pages really helps her well-chosen words hit home. Her pacing of the novel is brilliant and builds up to a superb, highly rewarding climax.

I also thought Amber herself was an exceptionally well-rounded character. She's a heroine in the way she stands up to her father and pushes for change but there are times when she's not a likeable person, doing some nasty things herself. Her flaws humanise her and make her one of the best main characters I've read recently.

Massively recommended, I hope this finds a ton of readers and leads to many more books from Manjeet Mann.

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