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Translated by Jonathan Hunt
It is some years since a virus killed all the adults. Now Sicily lies in ruins while the disease lies in wait, poised to claim the children as they reach adolescence.
Brave, stubborn thirteen-year-old Anna looks after her brother Astor in the cottage where their mother’s skeleton rests, lovingly decorated, in a locked bedroom. She tells him fearsome stories about monsters, hoping to keep him safe at home while she forages among the real hazards. Wild dogs. Gangs of savage, blue-painted kids.
But then Astor starts to question Anna’s version of the world, just as the blue kids are turning their attention to the cottage—and suddenly, everything will change.
‘A fearsomely gifted writer.’
‘Ammaniti’s writing is sharp, lean and pacy.’
‘Ammaniti excels…in capturing the thought processes and fears and desires of children… once you start reading him, you can’t put him down.’
‘Surreal but somehow also wholly believable. This book is repulsive and terrifying in all the right ways.’