Author: Peter Hanington
Genre: General Fiction
Format: Hardcover 384 pages
Release Date: 2 May 2019
Publisher: Two Roads
I would like to thank the publisher and the author for the opportunity to read this book via NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Veteran BBC reporter William Carver is in Cairo, bang in the middle of the Arab Spring. ‘The only story in the world’ according to his editor. But it isn’t.
There’s another story, more significant and potentially more dangerous, and if no one else is willing to tell it, then Carver will – whatever the consequences.
A Single Source tells two stories, which over a few tumultuous months come together to prove inextricably linked. There are the dramatic, world-changing events as protests spread across North Africa and the Middle East, led by a new generation of tech-savvy youngsters challenging the corrupt old order. And then there are two Eritrean brothers, desperate enough to risk everything to make their way across the continent to a better life in Europe.
The world is watching, but its attention span is increasingly short. Carver knows the story is a complex one and, in the age of Facebook, Twitter and rolling news, difficult stories are getting harder to tell. If everyone is a reporter, then who do you believe?
This book was a complete departure from the types of books I’ve been reading recently and it was exactly what I needed. I love books that contain elements of things I can relate to real life, and this book captures the fact that you can’t always trust what you read in the news perfectly. It really details all the goings on behind the scenes and all the parties at play trying to spin information to suit their own political agendas.
There are a lot of different characters in this book so you really need to pay attention. We follow two journalists in Egypt, a local woman they have hired to help with translation, two brothers are they try to smuggle their way to Italy, a communications employee working within a government department, and a few other characters around these ones. What is really clever though is how all these characters stories are intertwined and linked even though some of them never even meet.
This is a bit of a slow burner but it is brilliantly crafted and if you stick with it to the end I personally don’t think you will regret it. I really enjoyed this book and thought it was well researched and expertly plotted to deliver this finished book.
About the Author
PETER HANINGTON worked for BBC Radio 4’s Today programme for 14 years and throughout the Iraqi and Afghanistan conflicts. He initiated the special guest editor programmes and worked on special projects including collaborations with the Manchester International Festival and Glastonbury.
He still works for the BBC and lives in London.
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