By: Katy Warner
Genre: YFB - General fiction (Children's / Teenage)
Published by: Hardie Grant Egmont
Published: 1 Aug 2019
ISBN: 9781760504618


A vivid, captivating contemporary YA novel about the power of resistance, from a stunning Australian debut author. Perfect for fans of The Handmaid’s Tale and Z for Zachariah.

Even though she lives on the wrong side of town, 16-year-old Santee believes her world is like ours: that running late for curfew will only get you grounded, and that the government tries to keep its good citizens safe and secure. Until one night, everything changes.

On her way home from school, Santee takes a detour to the outskirts of town with a boy that she likes – and then finds herself stranded overnight when his car breaks down. When she’s finally able to get a lift towards home the next morning, Santee discovers that everything has changed. A 'safety border' – a wall – has gone up around her part of town, imprisoning her family and trapping her on the outside…

With its subtle familiarity and a tender, defiant teen romance at its core, Katy Warner’s powerful debut novel is about the importance of hope and standing up for what you believe in.


The government keeps getting stricter - with new rules to protect the good people from one side of town from the threat of those that live on the other. The problem is Santee missed her curfew…

Her new friend Z’s car wouldn't start and now she is left stranded on the wrong side of the “safety barrier” - a sort of Berlin Wall like structure that has popped up around her section of the town.

Santee is taken in by Z’s wonderful, if somewhat rebellious family, but when his father is taken away for his subversive behaviour and they lose their lovely apartment to a good family, their world gets a whole lot tougher. Will Santee ever see her family again?

This is a strong anti-establishment novel about standing up for what is right in any small way you can.

It is partly romantic, as her tumultuous relationship with Z develops. Filled with YA themes of being true to yourself, hope, family, and resilience, this is a terrific novel suitable for all teenagers.

Reviewed by Rob