"The Code" is a vivid and compelling literary thriller that balances emotional tension, physical action and internal growth,' according to Kevin MacNeil, poet, playwright and author of 'The Brilliant and Forever','Stornaway Way' and 'A Method Actor's Guide to Jekyll and Hyde''
"Tomorrow is Another Life" is a fast paced adventure story which moves seamlessly between thrilling action, satire, humour, and occasional glimpses of horror.
Underpinning the novel is the serious issue that millions of people continue to live in places that outlaw same-sex relationships and prosecute people for being gay. As in the imaginary Mutabe, there are currently five countries and parts of two others, in which homosexuality is still punishable with the death penalty, while a further 70 imprison citizens because of their sexual orientation.
As is depicted in "Tomorrow is Another Life", this punishment can be applied hypocritically, and for predominantly political reasons.
perfect - had grossed myself out on murder/mystery stuff during lockdown and fell on this book as a life raft. It was often surprising, often very funny, often provocative. Never boring and curiously suspenseful (I mean - spoiler alert - that once you'd clocked our hero as a survivor, he still had to manage to survive a great deal without loosing that tension of the possibility of failure. Have bought for friends. Highly recommended.
by vanilla beer
Ah, the book that kept catching me out with its clever shifts in pace and mood. I was delighted to be transported to a far-off land on a train with many carriages: suspense, satire, farce, pathos and hope. No leaves on the line and arriving at its destination with great skill. Excellent read.
Leon’s birthright, one he didn’t know he had, as heir of Chief Onagaku is hardly the stuff of dreams. As we follow Leon’s ordeals, from desert rides, damp dungeons and brothels to swanky champagne receptions, we are as confused as he is, about who is on whose side.
This cracker of a story takes the reader to a land of military khaki and tribal prints. It is terrifying in parts, hilarious in others and entertaining all the way.
A brilliant read that will takes us to the dusty, smelly nightmare of Mutabe where the food and corruption are equally bad. Until Leon arrives.
This is an exciting, page-turning novel. No sooner have you caught your breath after one adventure than Leon is sent, hurtling on another. Sometimes the book is very funny. The scenes when Leon is first in the Hotel Britannica and later with the gap year students in the desert are particularly memorable. Often it is satirical. Occasionally it is shocking. These changes in tone are managed seamlessly and come across as entirely natural, which is quite an achievement.
The characters are well drawn and credible, though only the ever naïve Leon and the clear eyed- realist Primrose could be described as likeable.
I did have fleeting concerns that what I was being presented with was a one-sided critique of corruption and incompetence in the developing world, but on reflection this was offset by the comments indicating that corruption is as widespread in the UK, it’s just a lot more subtle. As Rolly, I think it was, said, we (i.e. the Mutabese) are just more honestly dishonest.
While absorbed in the twists and turns of the plot, there is a risk that the reader might forget that underpinning it is a serious injustice. Homosexuality is criminalised in many countries and, incredible as it may seem, still incurs the death penalty is some. As in this novel, these sanctions are often applied hypocritically and politically.
Also highlighted is the role of the powerful, developed countries in the affairs of less developed, poorer countries like Mutabe. These ‘major powers’ act like the Greek gods, pulling the strings of so many of the local players and subverting real democracy.
This novel is not a polemic, but it makes these points well.
I recommend this book. An exciting, entertaining read, but also a book to provoke thought about its more serious aspects.
by Tony Allen
Fast paced and surprising to the end. Has the feel and structure of an action movie
by Tony G
I grew up on a diet of John Buchan and H Rider Haggard and this highly entertaiining novel gave me a few 'Proust madeleine' moments, taking me back to those Saturday morning cinema clubs which always ended with the hero dangling over the edge of a cliff for a week. It's also laced with acerbic touches of humour which have more than a hint of Waugh about them, plus a really strong sense of place which comes through in almost every descriptive scene.
I really enjoyed this and will definitely want to read more from this author.
by GJ Minett
Power-grabs, corruption and a society where nothing works without American dollars to oil the machine, Mutabe is a nation in a mess and desperately in need of a strong, new leader. Could that person be Leon Cartwright, a wimpy fridge engineer coasting through a bland existence in suburban England? Unlikely as it seems, Leon appears to be the grandson and only heir of Chief Onagaku, founder of the nation and its first president. He is also their last hope.
Poor old Leon will have to dig dip within himself to sort out all the warring factions: the malfunctioning facilities in his hotel bathroom are the least of his worries. No-one knows who is working for who, or in fact who is really pulling the strings. Whoever they are, they are keen to get rid of Leon. The setting is a fictional African country whose leaders are cruel and preposterous, but, like all great satires, it could so easily be true. If you enjoyed Evelyn Waugh’s Scoop, this book will definitely shake you off your sofa!
by Sarah Moore
Some sensitive modern challenges are addressed in this book, which offers great characters and quite a complex plot. The pace was, at times, uneven, but overall I found myself so engrossed in the twists and turns that it didn’t really matter. A different sort of book for people who like books which offer amazing characters and sharp dialogue.
by NetGalley review
Lived in India, Philippines, UK.
MA, English: Cambridge University
MA, Creative Writing (Distinction): Kingston University, London.
Short story and poetry prize winner.
Fellow, Charted Institute of Personnel & Development
Formerly HR Director of Global Organisation