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Written by Jason Wallace
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The Lovereading4Kids comment
In a Nutshell: Alleged alien encounter inspired by true events | An utterly absorbing novel based on the real-life phenomenon of a group of Zimbabwean schoolchildren claiming to have experienced an extra-terrestrial encounter.
With over fifty children asserting that they saw the same spaceship, and the same evil-eyed aliens, American psychiatrists have come to investigate. It could be a form of mass hysteria, but why are all the accounts and depictions so completely identical? How could so many kids tell the exact same lie for so long, and why would they lie? Alongside being gripped by the uniquely mysterious event at the heart of the novel, I was bowled over by the author’s mastery of multiple narratives. The intertwined lives of six young people affected by the encounter are explored in all their brutal complexities, and the novel’s real-life origins will surely draw in more reluctant readers. Magnetic, haunting, and richly rewarding. ~ Joanne Owen
Teens and YA's love to read and so in addition to the review by one of the Lovereading4kids editorial experts some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel members were also lucky enough to read and review this title. Click here to read their full reviews.
- Zac Hall, age 13, West Buckland School - 'A thrilling story with an incredible background of mischief and sadness...Overall I think this is an amazing book.'
- Natalie Hunter, age 15 - 'It is possibly one of the most unique books I have ever personally read...I would definitely recommend this book and would tell you not to get put off if you're not a fan of sci-fi.'
- Grace Spear, age 14 - 'Encounters is a brilliant book, packed with almost every emotion. I could never tell what was going to happen next and it always kept me guessing.'
- Finn, age 13 - 'Encounters made me feel all sorts of emotions. It's a good book but kind of hard to read.'
- Sidney Greenslade, age 13 - 'Encounters is an emotional and astounding tale about a group of children who say they've seen aliens. Nobody believes them, although that doesn't mean they're lying...fascinating and beautifully written.'
- Talia Jacobs, age 15 - 'I quickly found myself becoming engrossed with the story...an extremely unique book.'
- Neha Saji, age 14 - 'Encounters by Jason Wallace is much more than just about school children's sighting of aliens.'
- Rose Roberts, age 13 - 'Thought provoking, emotional, and really well written, this book was really enjoyable. It's hard to describe how good it was. The different viewpoints knit in really well together...I really enjoyed this, and have recommended it to my dad.'
- Charlotte, age 16 - 'A creatively written story with an intriguing plot. A great read.'
- Edel Waugh - 'The story is thought provoking and a must read for all fans of UFO'S and unusual things happening to ordinary people.'
- Emily Price - 'I highly recommend this book, it was very intense and always kept the reader engaged. A brilliant read!'
- Khadijah Ahmed - 'Encounters was a difficult read for me...a pretty dark story with strong language and themes that have the potential to be very upsetting.'
Encounters by Jason Wallace
Zimbabwe, 1994. A group of children spot peculiar lights in the sky over the grounds of their school. From this moment on, six young people's lives are changed forever. Gary hides the anguish he feels now his mum's left, acting out in fury and hatred. Chloe has no words for the thing she fears most every day. Karl is the headmaster's son, now fallen from grace. Tendai knows he can never live up to his grieving father's ideals. And Sixpence watches all, knowing he'll never be like these other children. All of them have seen something they can't explain. In amongst these tangled, tortured lives, comes a group of psychologists to verify the spookily similar claims of every witness. Their daughter, Holly, can tell there's more to it than aliens or mass hysteria - can she reveal the dark truths that haunt them?
Inspired by true accounts, this is the long-awaited new novel from Costa-award-winner Jason Wallace.
"A stunning new novel from a powerful and original writer" -- Tim Bowler
Praise for Out of Shadows:
“Jason Wallace’s bleak, ferocious debut is a powerful, devastating read for older teens” Patrick Ness, Guardian
“An extraordinary coming-of-age novel . . . The book’s intensity, drama and pace leaves a lasting impact” The Bookseller
About the Author
Interest Age: From 12
More books by Jason Wallace
Andersen Press Ltd
4th May 2017
Andersen Press Ltd is an imprint of Andersen Press
Andersen Press is one of the leading independent children’s publishers, publishing some of the biggest names in the world of children's books including the much-loved picture book characters the Little Princess and Elmer the patchwork elephant. Andersen Press is the home of many award-winning authors and illustrators including Melvin Burgess, Rebecca Stead, Satoshi Kitamura, Tony Ross, David McKee, Chris Judge and Jeanne Willis. Founded in 1976 by Klaus Flugge it won the Bologna Best Children’s Publisher prize in the European Category in 2016, the company’s 40th anniversary year.
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