Raj is oblivious to the Second World War being fought beyond his tiny exotic island. His mother is his sole company while his father works as a prison guard, so the boy thinks only of making friends. One day, from the far-away world, a ship brings to the island Jewish exiles who have been refused entry to Israel. David, a recently orphaned boy of his own age from Prague, becomes the friend that he has longed for, and Raj takes it upon himself to help David to escape from the prison. As they flee through sub-tropical forests and devastating storms, the boys battle hunger and malaria - and forge a friendship only death could destroy.
Nathacha Appanah, a French-Mauritian with an Indian background, was born in Madagascar in 1973. She was brought up in Mauritius and worked there as a journalist before moving to France in 1998. The Last Brother was awarded the FNAC Fiction Prize in 2007 in its French edition. Geoffrey Strachan is the award-winning translator of Andrei Makine.