Deadly Reads: Between Us

January 12, 2019

Wow! Clare Atkins’ second novel, Between Us, is a must read for every Australian… especially you.

10 Reasons to Read Between Us (Black Inc Books 2018)

  1. Hear asylum seeker voice: It’s a chance to get inside the head of a non-English speaking asylum seeker- written from the perspective of an Iranian asylum teen but in English to allow readers the unique opportunity to hear her voice.
  2. Behind the scenes on detention centres: The ‘Border Force Act’ prevents people working with asylum seekers (doctors, teachers, security etc) from speaking out about the conditions they witness. Clare Atkins was able to interview a wide range of sources for her book allowing her to reveal what life is like for asylum seekers behind the wire, locked doors and secrecy.
  3. Storyline: Interesting, worthy story-line that deserves to be heard. Ana flees persecution in Iran only to be detained on Naru, Christmas Island, Darwin awaiting the birth of her little sister. Ana is allowed to attend the local high school, allowing the reader insight into intense security protocols entering and leaving the detention centre. After the birth of her little sister, Ana’s mother suffers depression as they wait to see if they will be deported or moved back to Naru.
  4. Characters: Authentic, engaging characters that allow the reader to ‘walk a mile’ in the shoes of an asylum seeker, fellow classmate and a security worker.
  5. Flashbacks give insight into home country: Through flashbacks, the reader is exposed to Ana’s past. We don’t learn much, just a taster to invite us to learn more ourselves, to form our own opinions.
  6. Humanity: You deserve to read a it as a human- they deserve you to read it as a human. Seeking asylum is a human right- not illegal.
  7. Parallels through Australian history: Australia has a history of detaining the ‘other’. First it was the treatment of Aboriginal people- massacres, the attempts to assimilate, to breed out (Stolen Generation), to control (NT intervention in 2006) and more recently to close down communities. Aboriginal people were rounded up onto reserves, had limited rights, were ‘flora’ and not citizens. History is meant to teach us, not to be repeated.
  8. Young love: Because who doesn’t love a YA book with young love?
  9. Award winning: There is a reason this book was just shortlisted for a CBBA award.
  10. We recommended it! So by now you’ve read a few of our ‘Deadly Reads’ and you totally trust our recommendations… A must read- go buy or borrow it now.

Between Us


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