“Noughts and Crosses” by Malorie Blackman
The book is called Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman. The beginning is set on a private beach. The two main characters which are also the first characters to be introduced in Chapter 1 are called Callum and Sephy. In this book, Crosses (black people) and Noughts (white people) aren’t equal. Crosses have all the power while Noughts are treated like dirt. Callum is a Nought and Sephy is a Cross. In the first chapter Callum entered a new school which is the same as Sephy’s. The first chapter really puts their relationship into perspective. The beach is Sephy’s family’s beach. Sephy seems really happy that Callum has kissed her and this suggests that Sephy would like to be Callum’s girlfriend. But on the other hand, Callum knows that that is near to impossible. Callums thinks that since they have two opposite skin colours there is no “us”.
The story is only in Sephy and Callum’s point of view. Both Sephy and Callum have problems which some of them they share with each other but most of them they keep hidden, or they aren’t interested in hearing about them. Sephy doesn’t have a happy family life as her mum is an alcoholic and her dad isn’t there for his family as he is the Home Office Minister and works from home.
Callum doesn’t have a perfect family either. Him and his brother, Jude, fight nearly all the time. His mum is trying to hold together the family as it’s falling apart. His sister is quiet as if she’s in a mind of her own and she hardly ever talks throughout the book. Callum’s dad and brother are both in a “terrorist group” called the Liberation Militia which are a group of Noughts throughout the country whose only target is to kill or suffer Crosses. We only find out that they are both in the group later on in the book. You can tell that Callum and Sephy really do love each other even when they don’t show it. There are a lot of problems in the book such as when a bomb (planted by the Liberation Militia) goes off in a popular shopping centre and Sephy and her motherare shopping there. Just before the bomb goes off, Callum learns that the bomb was planted by the Liberation Militia and so he runs to the shopping centre to find Sephy which he does.
One day when Sephy has had enough she writes a letter to Callum saying that she is going to a private boarding school and is Callum sees her before she leaves they can run away together. Sephy spends 2-3 years at the boarding school and tries to avoid visting home or her family visiting her. When Sephy does come home she is given a letter from Callum saying that he wants to meet up with her. By this point, Callum’s dad Ryan is dead as he is executed (Sephy witnesses this execution). As Sephy meets Callum, as he planned, on the beach she realises it’s a trap and as she’s running away from him, she gets attacked by Jude, Sephy and a couple of other members from the Liberation Militia. At first, Callum is happy that they’ve captured Sephy as they need her for the plan to get money off her rich dad. Sephy escapes and Callum helps her. A couple of days later, Sephy realises she is pregnant and Callum only finds out on the radio. Her dad and mum are strict on Sephy to get a abortion and when she says she won’t her dad calls her “a blanker’s slut”. Blanker is a rude word for Noughts. Sephy and Callum meet for a few minutes to discuss the baby but the police catch Callum and accuse him of raping Sephy. Sephy’s dad gives her an ultimatum. Either she has the baby and let’s Callum get executed or she receives an abortion and Callum only spends a few year in prison and so afterwards they can have a future together. Sephy decides to keep the baby.
The last two chapters of the book describe Callum going up to the execution stand and Sephy is there saying she loves him and that the baby will love him. There is an announcement right at the end of the book that says “At midnight on 14th May at Mercy Community Hospital, to Persephone Hadley and Callum McGregor (deceased) a beautiful daughter, Callie Rose. Persephone wishes it to be known that her daughter Callie Rose will be taking her father’s name of McGregor.” Sephy called her Callie after Callum.
This book was really interesting and I recommended this book to everybody. It describes how important is mix race in older days. This book shows the differences between black and white people, how they have to live together and their children have to go to the same school.