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Description - Face by Benjamin Zephaniah

In this startling debut novel from Benjamin Zephaniah, the author tackles the moving and compelling story of a young man, Martin, whose life is completely changed when his face is badly scarred in a joyriding accident. Brilliantly written with a real ear for dialogue, this is Benjamin Zepaniah breaking new boundaries.

Buy Face by Benjamin Zephaniah from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.

Book Details

ISBN: 9780747541547
ISBN-10: 074754154X
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 129mm x 13mm)
Pages: 208
Imprint: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publish Date: 7-May-1999
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Book Reviews - Face by Benjamin Zephaniah

US Kirkus Review » Looks may not be everything, but few high-school students would deny that physical appearance is connected to self-esteem and social standing. Zephaniah (Refugee Boy, p. 814) explores this theme wherein Martin, a good-looking, confident youngster, is burned and facially disfigured during a car crash. After a prolonged, somewhat tedious setup that introduces Martin and his world and then delineates his hospital stay, Zephaniah gets to the meat of his story-how Martin's altered face affects his feelings about himself and his relationships with others. Martin proves to be a champion survivor, attending classes as soon as he's physically able, then joining and becoming the captain of the school gymnastics team. A devastating experience-he's surrounded by group of younger kids who viciously taunt him about his looks-temporarily drives Martin off the team and back to the safety of his room. But he soon finds the courage to soldier on, leading his team in a freestyle gymnastic routine of his own devise. By showing up and competing at the tournament, he learns that, "It's not the winning that matters . . . it's the being here." It's a strong idea, but the story, which is set in Britain, never feels like it's plumbed the depths of the situation fully. The exposition is stilted, Martin's adjustment is too easy, and the author, by over-explaining how Martin feels and what he's learned, doesn't allow the reader to experience his situation viscerally. Nonetheless, a worthy subject that should give kids plenty to think about. (Fiction. 10+) (Kirkus Reviews)


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Author Biography - Benjamin Zephaniah

The Author: Benjamin Zephaniah is probably one of the most high-profile international authors writing today, with an enormous breadth of appeal, equally popular with both adults and children. Most well-known for his performance poetry with a political edge for adults and ground-breaking performance poetry for children, Benjamin also has his own rap/reggae band, and has appeared on Desert Island Discs. He is in constant demand internationally to perform his work: he is (he thinks) Nelson Mandela's favourite poet, and is the only Rastafarian poet to be short-listed for the Chairs of Poetry for both Oxford and Cambridge University. Benjamin lives in East Ham, London.

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