Back in 1977, the United Kingdom celebrated the Jubilee with street parties and decorated streets. A photo of the party in Cherry Gardens made the newspapers and was splashed all over the media. For Satish, the day is a painful memory, one that he would prefer to forget. So thirty years later when they want to reconstruct the photograph, Satish is reluctant.

Jubilee highlights the racism that was prolific through out the 70’s. Harris does a great job of allowing you to feel the injustice of the treatment and shows that racism is a by-product of ignorance and stupidity. Harris also shows how secrets and lies can and will follow all those involved for years. As the story builds it becomes less about racism and more about others cruelty and ignorance.

I felt that the story was trying to employ popular techniques, but it just didn’t work. While it is clear that the book is leading up to a significant event, I found it slightly frustrating that it took so long to get to the point. The events leading up to the day of the street party are told from several characters points of view. While it does give you more insight into the story, it jumps a little too much. Often, I got confused as to who was who. I was constantly asking was it Colette or Sarah who was Cai’s sister. To be honest, it probably isn’t a book that I would pick up and read again.

Cai xx

TITLE: Jubilee

AUTHOR: Shelley Harris

GENRE: Adult Fiction

RATING: 3/5

PLATFORM: Library Paperback

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