Friday, October 16, 2009

Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman

This hard-to-find book(although I saw another copy at Titles the other day when I was there) would be a great follow up to teenagers looking for the next book after Twilight. This is the classic story of a boy and girl on opposite sides falling in love. Except there is a twist.

In Noughts and Crosses, the opposite sides are black and white. In this world, the Crosses have all the power. They control the government, police, schools, media- everything. The Noughts have to live by the Crosses rules. They are their gardeners, their housekeepers, basically any menial job, the Noughts fill. It is the classic case of the rich getting richer.

In this world, we meet Callum -a nought boy and Sephy a Cross girl. They have been friends their whole life. Callum's mother was Sephy's nanny and they grew up together. Now that they are 15, their feelings for each other are starting to change. But it is very difficult for these two young people. Sephy's father is one of the most powerful men in the government, and he is very vocal about his views on the noughts and how they are worth less than the Crosses. Then there is Callum's family. Callum suspects his older brother and father of belonging to a group using violent means to bring attention to the inequality of the two races.

Sephy and Callum try to navigate their friendship through many many obstacles put in their path both from outside their families and within their families. This is a great read. There are also 3 other books in the series.

There is one scene that is a bit questionable, but it is very tame. I would suggest reading it first before giving to anyone younger than grade 7.

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