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Possibly one of the most talked about books of the year, Meg Rosoff's novel for young adults is the winner of the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize 2004. Heralded by some as the next best adult crossover novel since Mark Haddon's The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, who himself has given the book a thunderously good quote, this author's debut is undoubtedly stylish, readable and fascinating.
Rosoff's story begins in modern day London, slightly in the future, and as its heroine has a 15-year-old Manhattanite called Daisy. She's picked up at the airport by Edmond, her English cousin, a boy in whose life she is destined to become intricately entwined. Daisy stays at her Aunt Penn's country farmhouse for the summer with Edmond and her other cousins. They spend some idyllic weeks together--often alone with Aunt Penn away travelling in Norway. Daisy's cousins seem to have an almost telepathic bond, and Daisy is mesmerized by Edmond and soon falls in love with him.
But their world changes forever when an unnamed aggressor invades England and begins a years-long occupation. Daisy and Edmond are separated when soldiers take over their home, and Daisy and Piper, her younger cousin, must travel to another place to work. Their experiences of occupation are never kind and Daisy's pain, living without Edmond, is tangible.
Rosoff's writing style is both brilliant and frustrating. Her descriptions are wonderful, as is her ability to portray the emotions of her characters. However, her long sentences and total lack of punctuation for dialogue can be exhausting. Her narrative is deeply engaging and yet a bit unbelievable. The end of the book is dramatic, but too sudden. The book has a raw, unfinished feel about it, yet that somehow adds to the experience of reading it. (Age 14 and over) --John McLay --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This riveting first novel paints a frighteningly realistic picture of a world war breaking out in the 21st century. Told from the point of view of 15-year-old Manhattan native Daisy, the novel follows her arrival and her stay with cousins on a remote farm in England. Soon after Daisy settles into their farmhouse, her Aunt Penn becomes stranded in Oslo and terrorists invade and occupy England. Daisy's candid, intelligent narrative draws readers into her very private world, which appears almost utopian at first with no adult supervision (especially by contrast with her home life with her widowed father and his new wife). The heroine finds herself falling in love with cousin Edmond, and the author credibly creates a world in which social taboos are temporarily erased. When soldiers usurp the farm, they send the girls off separately from the boys, and Daisy becomes determined to keep herself and her youngest cousin, Piper, alive. Like the ripple effects of paranoia and panic in society, the changes within Daisy do not occur all at once, but they have dramatic effects. In the span of a few months, she goes from a self-centered, disgruntled teen to a courageous survivor motivated by love and compassion. How she comes to understand the effects the war has had on others provides the greatest evidence of her growth, as well as her motivation to get through to those who seem lost to war's consequences. Teens may feel that they have experienced a war themselves as they vicariously witness Daisy's worst nightmares. Like the heroine, readers will emerge from the rubble much shaken, a little wiser and with perhaps a greater sense of humanity. Ages 12-up. (Aug.)
Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
I loved this book. it is unusual in its concept and i was enthralled the whole way through.Published 1 day ago by Janey K
This might be the only time where I say that I liked the movie more than the book. It was a little hard to read.Published 10 days ago by Amazon Customer
I HAD SEEN THE MOVIE MADE FROM THE BOOK AND THE BOOK WAS EVEN BETTER. INTERESTING STORY OF SURVIVAL OF A GROUP OF COUSINS....VERY GOOD.Published 1 month ago by Sharon Haste
I saw the movie first and didn't like how abruptly the story ended so I looked up the book. The book - like always- was 100% better than the movie. I was definitely entertained.Published 1 month ago by Jessica
This is one of those books that, if you were to read the jacket blurb in the bookstore, you would have no idea what you were getting yourself into. Read morePublished 2 months ago by I Know What You Should Read
There were just so many things missing in this YA novel. I gave it a three because it held my interest, but I couldn't give it more than that. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Sarah McElwaney
Poorly written and half of it doesn't make sense. It jumps around too much and it's hard to follow.Published 2 months ago by Nikki
I was hoping for something a little more similar to a series like Ashfall...this book wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Beautiful Ruins
Great book. However, the dialog isn't like normal dialog. It's like you're being told a story rather than reading it like a book.Published 4 months ago by Caylah