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Fourth World by Kate Thompson
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It's so hard to find good science fiction for younger teens, so I'm happy to recommend this first in the "missing links" trilogy by the author of the fabulous "The New Policeman." 15-year-old Christie and his older stepbrother Danny(who is "different" - autistic? Brain damaged? This remains mysterious until the end) are called away from Ireland to Scotland by Danny's mother. The messenger? A talking starling named Darling. On the way, they link up with Tina, a homeless teen, who has befriended a talking dog named Oggy. They all make their way to Scotland in the midst of what appears to be a world-wide energy/food crisis to Scotland, where Danny's mother lives on a compound where she conducts rather morally dubious genetic experiments. The science is nebulous, the talking animals are adorable (if unnerving), the altered children are disturbing - and the writing and plot are first-rate. Can't wait to read the next two in the series! ( )
  emitnick | Aug 11, 2008 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 158234650X, Hardcover)

The first book in a trilogy about terrifying genetic experiments.

Danny is different. He's slower than other kids his age, and prone to violent outbursts. But when Danny runs off to find his biological mother, his older stepbrother Christie impulsively follows him. Along the way the two boys are joined by a runaway girl, a bird, and a dog that can speak to humans. However, nothing can prepare them for what they learn when they finally locate Danny's mother at her laboratory, Fourth World. It seems Danny's mother has been performing experiments-secret experiments-with terrifying genetic significance...

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:23 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Fifteen-year-old Christie and his older stepbrother, Danny, travel to the home and mysterious laboratory of the elder boy's scientist mother, where they learn a shocking truth about the nature of her experiments.

» see all 2 descriptions

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