Trash by Andy Mulligan


Written by Andy Mulligan

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Selected by a distinguished independent panel of experts including our editorial expert, Julia Eccleshare, for Diverse Voices - 50 of the best Children's Books celebrating cultural diversity in the UK.

Shortlisted for the 2012 Carnegie Medal.

The Judges said: A vivid and emotionally powerful story told through some great switches of authentic narrative voice, giving the perfect marriage of character and plot as the three children tell their stories. Though there are scenes that are visceral and shocking, humour is always present too, along with a strong sense of community and the sustaining nature of friendship.

Shortlisted for the prestigious Sheffield Children's Book Award 2011.

Headlong and heart-stopping, this is an adventure you just can’t put down. From the squalor of a rubbish dump to the grandeur of some of the finest houses in the city, this is a thrilling adventure. Three boys who live on a dump and spend their lives sorting rubbish find something so precious, so valuable and so wanted by someone else that their whole lives are turned upside down. How can they keep their find – and themselves safe? From the pathos of deprivation to the hope of a miracle this is a story full of emotion as well as vivid drama.


Trash by Andy Mulligan

Raphael is a dumpsite boy. He spends his days wading through mountains of steaming trash, sifting it, sorting it, breathing it, sleeping next to it. Then one unlucky-lucky day, Raphael's world turns upside down. A small leather bag falls into his hands. It's a bag of clues. It's a bag of hope. It's a bag that will change everything. Soon Raphael and his friends Gardo and Rat are running for their lives. Wanted by the police, it takes all their quick-thinking, fast-talking to stay ahead. As the net tightens, they uncover a dead man's mission to put right a terrible wrong. It's three street-boys against the world...

You can download a free teacher's notes resource from this page - see Readers Guide in the right hand column of this page.

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One of the most exciting and original novels of the year ... It's a tight, thrilling story, told from various characters

-good pulse beating through it. A genuine treasure find -- Sally Morris Daily Mail One of my favourite novels of 2010, now in paperback with a new cover look. Reminiscent of Slumdog Millionaire, three dumpsite boys take on the world in this gripping and intensely moving story ... Harrowing, exhilarating, humbling and quite brilliant -- Fiona Noble The Bookseller Outstanding, hotly anticipated thriller ... an exceptionally satisfying plot -- Amanda Craig The Times Great stuff: taut, plausible and thought-provoking -- Toby Clements Daily Telegraph Trash is a thriller with moral weight and a complex structure ... Without ever moralising, Mulligan raises issues of corruption, poverty, waste and excess in an exciting, but also grimly sad tale -- Suzi Feay Financial Times

About the Author

Andy Mulligan

Andy Mulligan was brought up in the south of London. He worked as a theatre director for ten years before travels in Asia prompted him to retrain as a teacher. He has taught English and drama in India, Brazil, the Philippines and the UK. He now divides his time between London and Manila.

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Book Info


224 pages
Interest Age: From 12


Andy Mulligan
More books by Andy Mulligan

Author's Website


David Fickling Books an imprint of Random House Children's Books

Publication date

31st March 2011




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