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Joan's picks: Day One and Run for Your Life

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Sun, 7 Apr 2024, 12:45pm

Joan's picks: Day One and Run for Your Life

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Sun, 7 Apr 2024, 12:45pm

Day One by Abigail Dean. Set in the Lake District of England, this is about a school shooting and its aftermath. A local school is putting on an annual performance by the older kids, designed to make the four year olds who will start school in the autumn feel comfortable and keen to begin their education – but it all goes horribly wrong, and the way it plays out afterwards is a real sign of the times. A young man with connections to the town becomes convinced that it never happened, while the daughter of one of the teachers killed in the tragedy has a version of events that seems at odds with some of the evidence. It’s a sobering premise which I think is probably drawn from recent world events such as the Sandy Hook massacre in the States, after which a denier called Alex Jones claimed it was all made up and peddled gross misinformation. 

Run for Your Life by Sue Williams. Nick Stride is an Englishman who moved to Russia in 1998 to work on the construction of a new British Embassy in Moscow, and then later on a palatial new home for one of Putin’s sidekicks, a guy named Shuvalov. He fell afoul of them and he and his family (wife, two kids) increasingly feared for their lives and moved half way around the world to Australia where they went completely off the grid, staying on illegally after their visas expired and spending years in the remote Kimberley which must be one of the most inhospitable places on earth. They eventually decided to hand themselves in but the callous indifference of the Australian immigration authorities made reintegration to mainstream society extremely difficult. Nick and his children ended up here in New Zealand where I believe they still live, and feel it’s the right time to tell their incredible story. 

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