Just down the road from their families, Deo and his friends play soccer in the dusty fields of Zimbabwe, cheered on by Deo's older brother, Innocent. It is a day like any other... until the soldiers arrive and Deo and Innocent are forced to run for their lives, fleeing the wreckage of their village for the distant promise of safe haven. Along the way, they face the prejudice and poverty that await refugees everywhere, and must rely on the kindness of people they meet to make it through. But when tragedy strikes, Deo's love of soccer is all he has left. Can he use that gift to find hope once more?
Relevant, timely, and accessibly written, Now Is the Time For Running is a staggering story of survival that follows Deo and his mentally handicapped older brother on a transformative journey that will stick with readers long after the last page.
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"Starred Review. There is plenty of material to captivate readers ... But it's the tender relationship between Deo and Innocent, along with some heartbreaking twists of fate, that will endure in readers' minds." - Publishers Weekly
"Starred Review. A harrowing tale of modern Zimbabwe... gripping, suspenseful and deeply compassionate. Williams, a renowned dramatist, gives readers compelling characters and, in simple language, delivers a complicated story rooted - sadly and upliftingly - in very real events." - Kirkus
"Williams skillfully draws the plight of these refugee brothers with both suspense and sympathy, and readers cannot help but root for them in their quest to rebuild their broken lives... Williams joins Beverly Naidoo and Allan Stratton with this incisive portrait of sub-Saharan Africa, a compelling mix of suspense, sports, and social injustice." - Horn Book
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Michael Williams is a writer of plays, musicals, operas and novels and the Managing Director of Cape Town Opera in South Africa. He began writing "radio plays" while studying at University of Cape Town and had his first novel published when he was twenty-five years old. He has written operas for young people based on African mythology as well as the libretti for symphonic operas that have premiered around the world. Michael is the author of several books, including the highly praised young adult novel Crocodile Burning. He finds writing fiction to be the perfect antidote to the drama of keeping an opera company alive in Africa.
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