Title: Knife Edge (Noughts and Crosses #2)
Author: Malorie Blackman
On the Shelves: Fiction> Dystopian> Young Adult
For fourteen years, Sephy, a singer, struggles to raise her mixed-race child in an apartheid society, telling Callie Rose very little about her father, and trying to make her mark in the music business where she also has to deal with prejudice. But suddenly and dramatically, Callie discovers the truth about her parentage — that her father, Callum, was hanged for terrorism! Can mother and daughter heal the rift that now opens between them? And can Callie ignore the pain of the past as she takes her own steps towards her future? This is a riveting and page-turning novel for ages twelve and up that will confirm Malorie Blackman’s status as one of today’s top authors for young readers.” (Goodreads 2014)
I read Noughts and Crosses last year, before I set up my book blog (hence no typed review) and I gave it five stars. I read it in one day and thoroughly enjoyed it. It was emotional, intense and thought provoking. I realise I’ve not yet done a review on the first book and for the time being, you’ll just have to take the previous sentences as a review for it until I get my backside in gear. Knife Edge continues the series where the first book left off. I’ve had this book sitting on my shelf waiting to be read, for nearly a year now, and despite that amount of time passing, I dove back into this world with no problems at all. This second novel follows a different style of narration than the original book, because a large portion of it is narrated by Sephy, writing mental letters to her daughter. Blackman’s style of writing is just as addicting as it always was, and chapters flew by in minutes when reading knife edge.
I always feel strange marking this series on my shelves as “dystopia”, since that theoretically is meant to describe a “broken society different from our own”- but really the whole point of this series is that it is simple a mirror image of our society. One in which the racist-tables have turned. I’m not so blind and “naive white girl” to innocently believe that racism doesn’t happen in this world and that there is probably a million things which are “whitewashed” daily which I don’t even bat an eyelid to. This series really makes me question racism in society in general and how even the simplest things convey messages without even being ethnicity related. For example, constant casting of white males and females in Hollywood movies, despite that facts that in the books, the characters are often not Caucasian at all.
This book follows Sephy as she struggles to raise her daughter as a single parent, while still dealing with the familial and political fallouts from the first novel. Callum’s brother, Jude is on the run while working within the LM, a Nought “terrorist” group fighting for Nought rights. Sephy struggles between her emotions for her daughter, her dead lover, her dangerous position in the nought/cross society now she has made herself a “blanker”. While I did enjoy this book, I did find a couple of flaws within it, which made me knock off a star- but mostly, it is a strong sequel which has made me want to continue the series further- be warned, book 2 ends on a cliffhanger!