Love, David

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Lodestar Books, 1991 - African fiction (English) - 128 pages
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Anna watches as her older brother upsets the family by involving himself in illegal activities to escape from the poverty of his home life in South Africa.

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From South Africa, a moving evocation of the life of the ""colored"" under apartheid, based on the childhood of the author's mother. Narrator Anna lives in ""the Kamp""--""a vast stretch of undeveloped land on which people set up makeshift homes from scraps of wood and iron."" She's old enough for school but must stay home to take care of her baby sister while Mamsie works long hours for her ""madam."" Dadda, an excellent gardener, is regarded with affection by his wife and daughters despite his violent alcoholic rages, but he's bitterly at odds with his stepson David, whose behavior he hopes to improve with frequent beatings. David is adored by his half-sister and also finds solace with a dog he has rescued from drowning; impelled by the family's grinding poverty and goaded by Dadda's abuse, he also has a secret life of petty thievery and marijuana peddling, which eventually brings social services into play and results in a special boarding school (its nature is not clear) for David, a move to better housing for the family, and school for Anna. Case succeeds admirably in her attempt ""to share a culture with those who do not know about it"": her sharply drawn characters and story of a warmhearted boy responding to his troubles with care for his dog as well as with rebellion are poignantly believable, the setting fully realized. Illustrations not seen. 


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About the author (1991)

Dan Andreasen is the illustrator of numerous picture books, including "By the Dawn's Early Light: The Story of the Star-Spangled Banner" by Steven Kroll, which was named an ABA Kids' Pick of the Lists and a Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies; "A Quiet Place" by Douglas Wood; and "Sailor Boy Jig" by Margaret Wise Brown. He has also authored several picture books, including "With a Little Help from Daddy" and "A Special Day for Mommy". Dan lives with his family in Medina, Ohio.

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