Synopses & Reviews
"This somber yet not hopeless fable set during WWII offers a haunting portrait of families, human and otherwise, torn apart. Two Romany boys, 12-year-old Andrej and nine-year-old Tomas, flee with their infant sister after German soldiers arrest their relatives, discovering a bombed-out town with an intact zoo. Lindgren Award winner Hartnett (Butterfly) combines powerful prose with magical realism to heighten this setting and develop the personalities of the animals that the boys meet, who begin to speak after another round of bombing. The group including a silent eagle, a mischievous monkey, a lioness whose family has been taking from her, and a seal stolen from its mother as a pup spend a charged night sharing stories. Offermann's (The Boneshaker) delicate b&w drawings introduce each chapter. Hartnett doesn't minimize the horrors the boys have seen, making a profound case for the futility of war while exploring questions about responsibility and freedom. 'You are a mysterious animal, you know,' the bear tells the brothers. 'A bear does what a bear must do to keep itself alive. But a man does many things that he has no need to do.' Ages 10 up. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Sonya Hartnett is an internationally acclaimed author of many award-winning novels, including THURSDAY'S CHILD, WHAT THE BIRDS SEE, STRIPES OF THE SIDESTEP WOLD, THE SILVER DONKEY, THE GHOST's CHILD, BUTTERFLY, and the Michael L. Printz Honor Book SURRENDER. She was the winner of the 2008 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, the world's largest award for lifetime achievement in children's and youth literature. Sonya Hartnett lives in Australia.
Andrea Offermann is a fine artist and the illustrator of BONESHAKER by Kate Milford. She attended the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, and now lives in Germany.