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Four friends decide to run away from the horror of their everyday lives in a children’s home in the English countryside. They head for the woods, their sense of freedom surprises them, and for the first time they feel the exhilaration of adolescence. Yet the forest slowly asserts its own power and what happens there will affect the four boys’ lives forever. With his trademark humour, compelling narrative directness, and rhythmic prose, Alex Wheatle here shows himself to be an author of real calibre, exposing the social stigma associated with children’s homes, and the psychological consequences of their impact on sensitive children. Never losing pace or failing to engage the reader at every moment, ‘Home Boys’ is an unflinchingly honest depiction of childhood.


This is a brave, brutal story told with a shocking immediacy. Alex Wheatle has created a disturbing portrait of life in a children s home, in language which is plain, unsparing, and heart-rendingly poignant
Daily Mail
Strong and meaningful
Independent on Sunday
This is a book to read and nourish ... For it is a book which never gives up on its characters and, doing such, also never gives up on its readers
Morning Star
Impossible to put down
Buzz Magazine
A gripping, horrifying and moving adventure story
Maggie Gee
I think I went through every emotion possible whilst reading this book and was bereft when I got to the end
5/4 nudge-book.com
With this groundbreaking work of fiction, Wheatle has produced what is truly the most moving book I have read this year
The New Nation
A beautifully written poetic portrayal of loyalty, friendship, and boyhood adventure
Big Issue
Alex Wheatle, always a gripping writer, has given us an important work about life as a kid in care in the 1970s and how brutality and abuse within the system can continue to distort and destroy lives down the years
Teen Librarian
Alex Wheatle writes from a place of honesty and passion with the full knowledge and understanding that change can only happen through words and actions
Steve McQueen