Into the World by Ted Dawe.
Into the World by Ted Dawe. Pub Mangakino University Press, 2016. http://www.teddawe.com.
This sequel to the award winning and controversial Into the River is tuff, raw, emotional, at times unbelievable but always riveting. It continues the descent into hell of innocent Maori boy Te Arepa who has morphed into the devious but likeable Public school educated Devon Santos.
Expelled from school this novel starts 10 minutes after Into the River with Devon deciding to stay in Auckland and not go back to his Whanau. Big mistake.
Devon contacts his school mate Mitch who is now the gopher or bitch to Rebel who is a skinhead and into drugs, midnight autos and the seedy street life. Devon finds work and accommodation with Martin and his wife Gail and learns what it is like to be used.
When that ends he is taken in by Mitch and the skinheads and it is all downhill. Prison is the inevitable ending but you know that Devon has been unlucky, he has been dealt a bad hand.
A new Corrections Department initiative throws Devon a lifeline and he grabs it with both hands and is taken in by a rich philanthropic rich man called Wes. Life begins to look sweet for Devon, he is intelligent, willing and adaptable. Then he meets Ella. The rest is dramatic reading.
Superbly written by Ted Dawe in three parts with short sharp chapters. The story moves fast like the cars Devon drives and the street talk and dialogue is a feature of the novel.
The question that is asked is does Devon really have a chance in life? School alienated him from his culture and whanau and in this book he still hides his Maori upbringing. What options does he have after prison? Can any one be totally rehabilitated? Does society give Devon or any prisoner for that matter, a chance?
Ted Dawe throws up a lot of social issues. The role of father is a massive issue in this novel both for boys and girls. I like his style, but some may not. Whatever you think it is damn good writing.
Certainly senior secondary and young adult.