Kristine's Reviews > Safe House

Safe House by James Heneghan
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's review
May 27, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: young-adult, suspense, realistic-fiction, political, novel
Read from May 27 to 28, 2012

This quick read was pleasantly surprising in its balanced look at such a sensitive, divisive issue. Liam is a young Catholic teen living in Northern Ireland who dreams of joining the circus, so he attends classes on the weekends with his friends and has posters of performers lining the walls in his room. But when his parents are brutally murdered in a random retaliation killing, he wakes up to see one of the perpetrators who briefly removed his mask. He is sent to live in a safe house until the killer is caught, but soon realizes his life is still in danger.

Liam is a quick and spirited character drawn with realism during this brief look at this moment of is life. There is a detailed description of the issues in Ireland/NI for those unfamiliar yet it rarely felt daunting or overly didactic. It is also made abundantly clear that there are good and bad Catholics and Protestants.

Good for all young adult reading levels and a good length. Apart from the murders in the beginning, there are very few red flags, with no sex or cussing.
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