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Comment: Very good condition! Book is ex-library, but appears rarely read. Fresh, clean front cover with no tears, marks, or creases. Small barcode on back cover. Library stamp inside front and back cover. Pristine pages with no markings. Minimal wear on edges and corners. Eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping! Thank you for looking!
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Maggot Moon (Michael L. Printz Award - Honor Title(s)) Hardcover – February 12, 2013

34 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up-In a grimly surreal alternate 1950s, 15-year-old Standish Treadwell leads a bleak life under a totalitarian government reminiscent of World War II Germany and Cold War Soviet Union. Struggling with an unspecified learning disability, he doesn't fit in-he dreams of a land of Croca-Colas and plans an imaginary mission to planet Juniper with his best friend, Hector-until Hector and his family are abruptly taken away because they know too much about the government's machinations. Standish's quirky first-person voice and fragmented storytelling gradually reveal that the government is intent on winning a propaganda-filled space race and will go to any length, including a massive hoax, to appear victorious. The story borders on allegory, and the setting is deliberately vague. It is implied that the details that led to this dystopian society are not important; the crucial point is that Standish becomes determined that he, an individual, can take action against a cruel and powerful regime. With brief chapters and short sentences, the prose appears deceptively simple, but the challenging subject matter makes for a highly cerebral reading experience. Stomach-churning illustrations of flies, rats, and maggots accompany the text, creating a parallel graphical narrative that emphasizes key moments in the plot. Though its harsh setting and brutal violence may not appeal to those seeking a happy ending, the story's Orwellian overtones will fuel much speculation and discussion among readers.-Allison Tran, Mission Viejo Library, CAα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* The year is 1956. In an unnamed country of obvious allegorical weight, the totalitarian government of “the Motherland” keeps the “impure” in ghettos where they live off scraps and hope not to be dragged away to camps. Standish, 15, lives in Zone 7, a nasty place from which school is no respite—there cruel teachers beat students and, on this particular day, kill one. Standish is expelled in the aftermath, and the next step for him may be the camps. Standish, however, knows a secret. The Motherland is hyping a moon landing that will prove to the world that they reign supreme with interstellar weaponry. But it’s a fake: just across the park, accessible via a hidden tunnel, is a building that houses an artificial moon set. And one of the so-called astronauts has shown up in Standish’s cellar missing his tongue. Gardner snatches elements from across history to create something uniquely her own: a bleak, violent landscape of oppression, as well as the seeds of hope that sprout there, revealed in Standish’s tenacious, idiosyncratic voice over 100 short chapters. Crouch’s frequent sketches of flies, rats, and maggots seem unrelated at first, but they emerge as further metaphor for the taking. This is alt-history second; first, it is an eerie, commanding drama. Grades 7-12. --Daniel Kraus

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 690L (What's this?)
  • Series: Michael L. Printz Award - Honor Title(s)
  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick (February 12, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763665533
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763665531
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #427,536 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By OpheliasOwn VINE VOICE on September 6, 2013
Format: Hardcover
3.5 Stars

Sometimes a story has more layers than an onion, with more and more meaning to peel away and peel away. Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner is just such a story. But you might not like what you find under each layer.

Standish Treadwell isn't bright. At least, it is safer for Standish if you think that. In the alternative Britain he lives in, there isn't much of anything that could be considered "bright". No color, no fun, no happiness. But for a boy who can't read and write, this cruel world is particularly cruel. That is, until Hector comes along. As the only boy Standish has every called a friend, Hector is the most important person in his life besides Standish's grandfather.

The world doesn't take kindly to friends. With the Greenflies buzzing around and teachers who are willing to beat a little boy to death for laughing, the world is a cold hard place. But when Hector disappears, Standish refuses to stand by and let it happen. He watched his own parents disappear after his mother was taken and returned disfigured, and he isn't going to let the same thing happen to Hector. Standish is the only one who can help. He is the only one who can help because he is the one who is underestimated the most.

Have you read Animal Farm? If you have, you know there are two (or more) layers to that story. You have the weird story about the talking animals taking over the farm, and then you have the deeper allegory into the world's political figures. Maggot Moon is the same kind of story. Honestly? This is NOT a book for young kids or even most young adults. It is deep, complex, violent, bizarre, confusing, and I am not even sure I really liked it, but it had my mind spinning all day.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Brittany Moore VINE VOICE on June 26, 2013
Format: Hardcover
In the Motherland being different is frowned upon. If your different, there is probably a reason and that reason is your no good. Standish is different and until he got a friend he was nearly alone in the world. Standish had his grandfather (his parents were taken) and now he had Hector. They play with a football Standish found and it ends up on the other side of a big government wall. That's when the trouble really starts. What if Standish hadn't found that football? What if it hadn't gone over the wall? What if that fool Hector didn't volunteer to go get it? Maybe then Hector wouldn't be gone too. Maybe Standish wouldn't have to save him and the rest of the Motherland people.

I don't know what I was expecting with this novel, but it wasn't this. This was very interesting. It was a completely unique tale about a young boy in a cruel world. This story will shock you and warm your heart.

Standish puts himself down a lot. He has dyslexia, and everyone tells him that means he's not very bright. I don't think this is the case at all. Standish is kind and thoughtful. Just because his reading and writing isn't the best, doesn't mean he can't form intelligent thoughts. It's a shame that most of his teachers only perpetuate the idea that he isn't bright instead of trying to help him in any way. This country, the Motherland, seems like a terrible place to be. It seems a bit like Nazi Germany and we all know how fun that was.

The violence in this novel is enough to make you sick. There's the school yard bullying which is bad enough, but then there's the teacher bullying (not to mention the government bullying). Standish's current teacher is the worst. He is a despicable person with no sense of decency, with his sick thoughts based only on self-preservation.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Partin on February 28, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There isn't much to say about this book that you can't figure out by yourself by reading a small sample, by reading the descriptions, by looking at the beautiful artwork on the cover of the book. All you really need to know is the book is brilliant, broke my heart, sewed it back together, and broke it again. I couldn't stop reading it, and I have clearly found not only a new favorite book, but a new favorite book I will be reading time and time again.

Read it. You won't regret it.


I also wanted to mention the age appropriateness of this book. As the UK version actually does have a warning on the back for violence and language, but the US one does not, I think it's important to know that this book is probably not meant for 12 and under's.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Team LitPick on March 25, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
Though in some ways simply written, I found Maggot Moon to be a very powerful book. Although its syntax and diction was basic enough for middle schoolers, its language and imagery was coarse and crude, reflecting the lives the characters lived. This originally turned me off the story, yet as I continued reading, I found that the excellent character development and themes of courage and rebellion in the story overpowered any negative effect the grammar had originally had on me. The themes and ideas presented in the story, though dark and sometimes depressing, were truly adult, and I can say that the story made me cry in the end. I would recommend it to any high school reader who would like a quick yet thematically and emotionally powerful read.

Student Reviewer: rmaehill
Age at time of review - 16
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Maggot Moon (Michael L. Printz Award - Honor Title(s))
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