But Khosi is a regular teenage girl, focused on regular teenage thoughts: a cute boy, her education and her future. Set in modern day, many of the villagers hold on to old cultural customs, creating an interesting science vs. religion/culture conflict. This conflict would make for excellent discussion within the classroom. However, This Thing Called the Future is not a book for ‘light’ reading. Mature readers and advanced students could handle this topic, but most students would benefit from teacher direction. There are great themes and interdisciplinary opportunities within this story. Recommended for high school library purchase.
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Genre: Realistic Fiction
Age: High School
Themes: Coming of age, Science Vs. Religion, South African culture
Character Development: Very well drawn in main character, somewhat stereotypical in some characters
Plot Engagement: Not plot driven. Focus on coming of age for one girl.
Originality: Good cultural depiction on AIDS epidemic in South Africa
Thank you to author J. L. Powers for my review copy
Advisory: Sexual Situations
Publisher: Cinco Puntas Press
Date: May 2011
BUY This Thing Called the Future HERE
Great teacher lesson ideas and background on the culture: HERE