It is 2099 - and the world is gradually drowning, as mighty Arctic ice floes melt, the seas rise, and land disappears forever beneath storm-tossed waves. For 15-year-old Mara, her family and community, huddled on the fast-disappearing island of Wing, the new century brings flight. Packed into tiny boats, a terrifying journey begins to a bizarre city that rises into the sky, built on the drowned remains of the ancient city of Glasgow. But even here there is no safety and, shut out of the city, Mara realizes they are asylum-seekers in a world torn between high-tech wizardry and the most primitive injustice. To save her people, Mara must not only find a way into the city but also search for a new land and a new home...
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(197mm x 130mm x 22mm)
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
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US Kirkus Review »
Fifteen-year-old Mara loves her island home but time is short. The year is 2100 and waters are rising, leaving little land on which to shelter from the worsening storms. Mara convinces her people to leave home and search for cities above the rising waters. But after terrible losses, the refugees arrive at the New World city of New Mungo (which towers above the mostly submerged Glasgow) to find a dreadful situation. Refugees barely survive, starving and diseased, forbidden from entering the city except when they are press-ganged into forced labor. With the help of matriarchal tree-dwelling primitives outside the city and an attractive young man inside, Mara hopes to rescue her friends and find new hope for humanity. The overt ideology of Mara's tale, about as subtle as a brick, would be enriched greatly if these characters were at all developed. In a book that rests so heavily upon ideology, the science is exaggerated. The real-life climate-change worst-case scenario would lead to sufficiently shocking science fiction, so why sink Europe beneath the ocean? Inspirational but flawed. (Science fiction. 11-13) (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Julie Bertagna
After an early career as a teacher and freelance feature writer for major Scottish newspapers, Julie Bertagna has quickly established a reputation as an author of powerful and original fiction for young people. EXODUS, her first novel for Macmillan, was shortlisted for the Whitbread Children's Book of the Year Award and won the Lancashire Children's Book of the Year Award and the Angus Award. THE OPPOSITE OF CHOCOLATE was shortlisted for the Book Trust Teenage Prize 2004. Julie lives in Glasgow with her husband and daughter.