In his debut novel “Beyond the spiral gates”, Mutch Katsonga spins a coming of age tale of a boy sentenced to life in an institution during his teenage years. The whole story confirms a universal truth that most people aren’t inherently good or bad, and that sometimes good people do bad things and vice versa.
The author makes his distaste for the members of organized religion very clear and it serves the purpose of the story since the main character is an abused boy put in the care of men of religion who gave him and his fellow inmates the worst possible time.
Some of the dialogue could’ve used more work. It’s a recurring issue with debut novels, where the author believes that in order to write a good book he has to use more elevated speech, but in practice, it’s the opposite. I personally find it hard to connect with characters if they talk in a way that no real person talks.
As someone who managed to completely ruin her attention span with years of Internet abuse, I sometimes found it hard to read through the long paragraphs of description, even though they were very carefully crafted. The author has a developed style and it’s obvious that this novel was a work of many hours.
This novel isn’t something I usually read but I am glad I did since it gave me something fresh to think about. If you enjoy a good story of a boy finding his way to adulthood, and let’s be honest, who doesn’t, then this is something worth checking out.