GemX by Nicky Singer


Written by Nicky Singer

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

If you read this book you’ll certainly think twice about genetic modification – the 'benefits' of which scientists in the world today are all too keen to deliver to the human race.

GemX is a frighteningly unforgettable contemporary read where wealth and poverty collide and where flawlessness rules over the flawed, until that is Mr perfection discovers he’s no longer perfect. The reader’s emotions will see-saw throughout a brilliantly inspired plot and some terrific characterization.


GemX by Nicky Singer

In a world where perfection rules, Maxo Strang is king. He is a GemX, a boy genetically manipulated to be flawless. Nobody is better looking, more intelligent, of better social class...or more lacking in human empathy. Until Maxo discovers a crack in his face. This can't happen to him! It happens only to the Dreggies - the wretched underclass of unenhanced 'naturals' who live outside the Polis. Terrified, Maxo begins a search for a cure. It is a search that takes him into the Dreggies' world, a place unbelievably different from his own, where violence, poverty and ugliness are routine. There, Maxo meets Gala and Stretch, Dreggies who are searching for their father who 'disappeared' while volunteering for scientific research in the city. For some horrifying yet compelling reason, he finds himself attracted to Gala. Gala and Stretch will do anything to find their dad, and Maxo may be the key. His father was the last person to see theirs before he vanished. Now, they will use Maxo to get some answers - whether he consents or not. What none of them realises is that they are all pawns in a bigger game.;The city's Supreme Leader has plans - plans that will leave their lives hanging in the balance...


[Of The Innocent's Story]: 'Thought-provoking and horribly topical. The Bookseller This tense, gripping novel could hardly be more topical, raising questions of faith, loyalty and responsibility. Linda Newbery, TES The sheer imaginative audacity of The Innocent's Story propels it beyond anything expected. Julia Eccleshare Fine writing and shrewd perceptions ... contribute to this resounding tale. Independent on Sunday Brilliant! A truly original and moving story. The Teacher Here is proof positive that children's books can be just as affecting and wonderfully written as those written for adults. This startling book had me gripped from page one... it's like The Lovely Bones for teenagers and is quite simply unforgettable. Excellent. Evening News (Norwich) This is an original, often blackly humorous novel, which sets out to probe beneath the surface of easy assumptions. Irish Times Tender, thoughtful and idealistic, this is a tough but immensely worthwhile read. The Independent

About the Author

Nicky Singer

Nicky Singer has written four novels for adults, two books of non-fiction and six works for young people. Her first children’s novel Feather Boy won the Blue Peter ‘Book of the Year’ Award, was adapted for TV (winning a BAFTA for Best Children’s Drama) and then commissioned by the National Theatre’s Shell Connections series as a musical with lyrics by Don Black and music by Debbie Wiseman. In 2010 Nicky was asked by Glyndebourne to adapt her novel Knight Crew (a re-telling of the King Arthur legend set in contemporary gangland) for an opera with music by Julian Philips. 2012 saw both the publication of The Flask (‘a nourishing and uplifting story, with big themes and a big heart,’ The Guardian) and the premiere of her play Island (about ice-bears and the nature of reality) at the National Theatre. She has just published Island as a novel.

Nicky Singer lives in Brighton with her husband, their two sons and a daughter.

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Book Info


320 pages


Nicky Singer
More books by Nicky Singer

Author's Website


Oxford University Press

Publication date

21st September 2006




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