Beyond the Wall
Tanya Landman, Mr Tom Sanderson
The story of a runaway slave girl and her dangerous journey through the murky underworld of Roman Britain, by Carnegie Medal-winning author Tanya Landman.
From Tanya Landman, author of the 2015 Carnegie Medal winner Buffalo Soldier, comes a heart-stopping tale of love, corruption and the power of choice. Blood on her lips. Blood on her tongue. Blood that is not her own. Cassia does not fear to die, but for her – for a slave who has maimed her master – there are worse things than death. Yet the mighty Roman Empire has its limits. Beyond her master’s estate, beyond the river, far to the north stands Hadrian’s Wall. And beyond the wall? Freedom. With dogs on her trail and a bounty on her head the journey seems impossible. But then Cassia meets Marcus – slick, slippery, silver-tongued – a true and perfect son of Rome. And her only hope.
"[...] a great read for older teenagers who will relish the strong characters." * South China Morning Post * "I found this book delightful. It has an air of easy historical accuracy. It is also very evocative of the time of its setting and gives a strong feeling of a country that has been occupied for too long by a country whose grip is now weakening. Tanya Landman's ability to set this strong sense of history against a context of emotion and place that can be identified with by the reader makes both the plot and the setting very accessible. This book is aimed at the teen/young adult audience and deserves to be very successful." * Crime Review * "[...] excellent YA novel [...] Beyond the Wall is a great read, the scenes rattling by in a succession of suspense-filled chases and escapes with plenty of cliffhangers and surprises. The characters are strong, with both Cassia and Marcus very believable as young people in impossible situations." * The Guardian, Tony Bradman * "The pace never lets up and a sense of danger is ever present. The book draws a harsh picture of Britannia in the late Empire and the subject matter-slavery, foreign occupation and materialism-is very topical. This is an engrossing and enjoyable read for older teenagers." * Historical Novel Society * [...] the Carnegie-winning Landman has created her best heroine yet in a historical thriller that never releases its ferocious grip. * New Statesman * "[...] the power and beauty of the text is clear, sharp and fierce [...]" * The Literary Review * This is quite simply an excellent story! A gripping, full on adventure, rich in historical detail, Beyond the Wall is a book which you can't put down! [...] Whether the events in this story would have been possible or not, this is an amazing tale of courage, passion and the desire for freedom, vividly brought to life by a master storyteller. * Reading Zone * "This gripping tale, aimed at a mature reader, of the captives' rebellion that frayed the edges of the Roman empire in AD4, investigates the perilous position of women at every level of society, with frankness about sexual abuse and violence." * The Observer * "[...] gripping [...] Landman is an accomplished storyteller who finds footnotes from history and turns them into heavy-breathing tales of human perseverance. Her research is thorough, but she doesn't let what she doesn't know slow her down. A lesson in how to conquer historical young adult fiction, brick by brick." * The Times, Children's Book of the Week * This gripping tale, aimed at a mature reader, of the captives' rebellion that frayed the edges of the Roman empire in AD4 [...] Cassia and Marcus have a modern sensibility while credibly belonging to their ancient world, which fosters our connection to the deep past. But her skill is that of the novelist, rather than the historian. As with Rosemary Sutcliff's classic children's novel The Eagle of the Ninth, Landman is particularly good on the domestic nitty-gritty of Roman Britain. Dates and timelines are swiftly dispensed ("This was Britannia... occupied by enemy forces these last 300 years") but, when it comes to the hue of a mosaic or what's in a cooking pot, her eye never blinks and the pace of her story never slackens. "I have played fast and loose with strict historical accuracy," she explains in an afterword. And, like any of the best historical novelists, she gets away with it. * The Telegraph, Children's Book of the Week * The writing is crisply vivid, and packs a powerful visual punch, and I loved how Boudica's spirit of resistance and rebellion permeated the book through Cassia's indomitable strength. She's an extraordinarily memorable heroine, and this is an extraordinary novel - historical YA at its best, no less. * LoveReading, Joanne Owen * Slave girl Cassia escapes her master and sets out on a perilous journey north to Hadrian's Wall, and the freedom that lies beyond. I'm 100 pages in and captivated by Cassia's voice. * The Bookseller *
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