Both harrowing and life-affirming, the final novel from Carnegie Medal-winning author Mal Peet is the sweeping coming-of-age adventure of a mixed race boy transported to North America. Born from a street liaison between a poor young woman and an African soldier in the 1900s, Beck is soon orphaned and sent to the Catholic Brothers in Canada. Shipped to work on a farm, his escape takes him across the continent in a search for belonging. Enduring abuse and many hardships, Beck has times of comfort and encouragement, eventually finding Grace, the woman with whom he can finally forge his life and shape his destiny as a young man. A picaresque novel set during the Depression as experienced by a young black man, it depicts great pain but has an uplifting and inspiring conclusion.
A master storyteller The Bookseller Peet is fabulously talented -- Amanda Craig The Literary Review For some time now Mal Peet has been the most elegant prose stylist in the world of young-adult fiction [...] one of our best novelists, full stop. -- Anthony McGowan Peet died more than a year ago, so a final novel from him is something very special indeed. [...] an episodic coming-of-age drama that is powerful and harrowing but ultimately uplifting. The Bookseller His final book, almost finished at the time of his death, and completed by Rosoff at his request. It's a powerful, harrowing and ultimately uplifting coming-of-age drama following the adventures of a mixed-race boy transported to North America. The Bookseller
Mal Peet's first novel, Keeper, won the Branford Boase Award and the Bronze Nestle Children's Book Prize; Tamar won the Carnegie Medal; and Exposure was the winner of the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize. A writer and illustrator, Mal produced many books for children throughout his lifetime, most of them in collaboration with his wife, Elspeth Graham. He also wrote a critically acclaimed adult novel, The Murdstone Trilogy. Meg Rosoff is the award-winning author of How I Live Now, which won the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize and the Branford Boase Award. Her second novel, Just in Case, won the Carnegie Medal and her other books include Picture Me Gone and Jonathan Unleashed, her first novel for adults. She is the winnner of the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award. Meg lives in London and you can follow her on Twitter @megrosoff.