“Winner of the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize”.

Exposure Reviews


Winner of the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize.

The Best Children’s Books Ever (Guardian supplement 12th May 2008)

Top Ten Teen Books That Adults Should Read


Junior Library Guild Selection

BCCB 2010 Blue Ribbon


Shortlisted for the Inky Awards  2009


The Best Children’s Books Ever

This contemporary retelling of Othello – the doomed couple now a black Brazilian star footballer and a pampered young pop goddess – will continue to grip young readers for years to come.


“…Exposure, is a retelling of the plot of Othello, and it is totally electrifying. You don’t have to care about football (though Peet’s descriptions of what it feels like almost converted me) because he makes you care so much about his characters. Clever, funny, moving and superbly well written, it’s the work of a major author.”

The Times

Don’t expect a huge selection of fiction about sport, but Mal Peet’s Exposure (Walker) is an outstanding, thought-provoking example. Exploring the nature of fame and celebrity through a story, which parallels that of Othello, it is set in a fictional country in which football is a national obsession. 

Glasgow Sunday Herald

‘Mal Peet’s writing is excellent and the way he manages the different strands of his plot is masterly. I can’t recommend the book highly enough. As far as I’m concerned, this is the best of the Paul Faustino books and nearly as good as Tamar. If it’s not at least short listed for the Carnegie I’ll be outraged! It’s emotionally compelling and realistic and there’s no jarring happily-ever-after ending. Or, at least, not for all the characters…’

Pictures and Conversations

“Mal Peet’s Exposure is another outing for South America’s top sports journalist and amatuer crime-fighter Paul Faustino. This time, Faustino is a bit-player in a modern version of Othello. A black footballer named Otello marries a famous pop singer named Desmerelda. But Dezi’s father is a shady Right-wing politician, and one of Otello’s circle is plotting his downfall. The stage is set for a tragedy of sex and celebrity. Peet’s thrillers, with their blend of sport and homicide, are irresistible to teenage boys, and this ambitious story is his best yet”.

The Daily Telegraph

“Money, love and fame are intoxicatingly combined, giving a young couple superstar status. But this potentially benign combination becomes deadly dangerous when others become jealous. The pressures of the media and the power it has to destroy, the pitfalls of superstardom, the terrible gap between the lives of the rich and the rest and the horrible consequences of jealousy are all sensitively explored in this headlong gripping thriller.”


Wow! This is another stunning novel from Carnegie-winning author Mal Peet. The third book to feature the maverick sports journalist Paul Faustino, it deals with racism, child poverty, corruption and politics. It is based on Othello and as such the reader knows the outcome for the main players are destined to end in tragedy. I cried, I felt outraged and disappointed… mostly I marvelled at Peet’s skill as a writer. Exposure is a book featuring football that will appeal to girls just as much as boys. Outstanding.

Children’s Book News

‘More wonderful stuff from Mal Peet in a genre-defying novel of great thematic depth and complexity. Hung around an updating of Othello, it talks about football, homelessness, politics and celebrity culture, and it grabs you from beginning to end.’

‘… I loved it. Every single word, every single page.’

The Bookbag


“In a nameless South American country, soccer reporter Paul Faustino again finds himself in the midst of an unexpected story. Peet drops the magical realism and sense of history displayed in Keeper (2005) and The Penalty (2007) for something more topical and downright Shakespearean. Fame—and diabolical manager Diego—threatens the love between black soccer star Otello and beautiful, white Desmerelda. Meanwhile, street kid Bush tries to keep his lovely, fame-obsessed sister safe from the forces, criminal and not, preying on the poor. Far more than a retelling, this contains a deft study of class played out through the intertwined stories, a reflection on race and a study of how the masses are opiated (with soccer and beauty), linked by Faustino’s keen observations. It adds up to a wonderful read. The author employs dramatic devices (a cast of characters; script-formatted dialogue) as homage to Othello. Faustino comes across as an insightful reporter but lacks some of the nuance he showed in his previous adventures; ironically, that might just make this more accessible to teen readers.”

Kirkus Reviews

“… Peet spins a great story, with devilishly well-plotted connections among the characters, a deliciously evil villain in Diego Mendosa, and an unforgiving examination of the cult of celebrity.”

The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“Peet’s third Paul Faustino novel is based on the play Othello. He incorporates play elements into the novel by providing a cast of main characters and substituting dialogue for narrative prose. Peet excels at building his invented South American country and revels in providing cultural and political details. Good readers will become absorbed in the imaginary country and its inhabitants. The two plots, Otello’s downfall and the plight of the three homeless teens, converge well as the book progresses.”


‘As in his previous Faustino books, Keeper (2005) and the Penalty (2007), Peet’s prose is both lyrical and unflinching (a few characters use racial slurs, including the n word). Teens who know the original tragedy will delight in the myriad clever allusions. But Peet’s novel stands alone as a bold exploration of ageless themes of power, fame, love and trust, all seen through the deceptive lens of modern celebrity culture.’



Highly recommended.

‘A complex, challenging book, I read this over several weeks, as I allowed the parts of the interwoven stories to seep into my brain. Knowing Othello, I expected that there would be tragedy at the end and dreaded coming to that final stage. Ultimately the conclusion fitted well into the 21st century and what constitutes misfortune in the eyes of the media today.’

‘A review can’t do justice to such a formidable book’..


‘Peet’s writing is slick, assured and sophisticated. Don’t think this is ladlit, girls will enjoy it just as much: Exposure is a terrific read.’

The Irish Times