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Maggot Moon

by Sally Gardner
Illustrated by Julian Crouch

Published by U.S. edition: Candlewick Press, 2013
288 pages
ISBN: 978𢠩636-65531

Age 13 and older

Fifteen-year-old Standish lives in a ruined building with his grandfather in dismal Zone Seven. Like others who haven抰 been arrested or disappeared, he attends a strict, regimented school. But he抯 an oddity there: a boy who can抰 read. Standish抯 best friend, Hector, and his parents, originally from the Motherland, lived in the same building as Standish and Gramps, and the two families shared resources and ideas梑oth dangerous things. Even more dangerous was that Hector and Standish sometimes secretly went under the wall into the forbidden zone. On one of those trips Hector made a stunning discovery. Not long after, Hector and his parents disappeared. Futuristic dystopia? Not quite. Readers will have to piece together the clues, but they抮e all there in Sally Gardner抯 brilliant, nuanced alternate history set in Great Britain during the 1960s. Gardner imagines the Germans as victors of World War II in Europe and determined to conquer the rest of the world. Domination plays out in ways both large and small, from fascist control of British society to schoolyard bullying. But what would happen if the Germans could convince other countries that they抎 won the race to the moon and plan to mount a weapon there? Black-and-white line drawings tell a grim metaphorical tale of suffering and survival, adding additional tension to this riveting story told by a sweet, intelligent dreamer of a boy whose heart is full of so much love that he is able to conquer his fear in an attempt to thwart the Germans plan. (MS) 2013 Cooperative Children抯 Book Center

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