Hostage Three by Nick Lake

Hostage Three

Written by Nick Lake

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Longlisted for the Carnegie Medal 2014 - January 2014 Book of the Month - Shortlisted for the Leeds Book Awards 2014, 14-16 age category A menacing chill is never far below the surface in this gripping young adult novel. Amy is dealing with a host of problems when her father suddenly springs a trip of a lifetime on her. Having no choice, she unwillingly agrees to accompany her father and step mother sailing across the world on a luxury yacht. Slowly Amy relaxes into the life at sea. Maybe this will be an experience that will change them all? But then the boat is captured by pirates. Now nothing is certain and all the normal rules are broken. Nick Lake tells Amy’s story brilliantly. He is sympathetic and insightful about a girl trying to find out what really matters to her in a situation that is fraught with very real danger.

****NOTE Suitable for 15+ only as some strong content


The winners of the Leeds Book Awards are chosen by you! Read the books, talk about them with your friends & teachers and decide which one is your favourite. You can vote in your local library or at Voting closes on Friday 25th April and the winners will be announced on Tuesday 20th May.

See below for the entire shortlist.


Hostage Three by Nick Lake

****NOTE Suitable for 15+ only as some strong content. It's a once-in-a-lifetime thing: a girl on a yacht with her super-rich banker father; a chance for the family to heal after a turbulent time; the peaceful sea, the warm sun ...But a nightmare is about to explode as a group of Somali pirates seizes the boat and its human cargo - and the family becomes a commodity in a highly sophisticated transaction. Hostage One is Dad - the most valuable. Amy is Hostage Three. As she builds a strange bond with one of her captors, it becomes brutally clear that the price of a life and its value are very different things...


Leeds Book Awards 2014

The Battles of Ben Kingdom by Andrew Beasley

Ways to See a Ghost by Emily Diamand

The Child's Elephant by Rachel Campbell-Johnston

11-14 Shortlist

After Tomorrow by Gillian Cross

The Poison Boy by Fletcher Moss

Geek Girl by Holly Smale

The Killing Woods by Lucy Christopher

Hostage Three by Nick Lake

Ketchup Clouds by Annabel Pitcher

The Quietness by Alison Rattle


Praise for In Darkness:

In Darkness is a serious, nuanced, challenging novel. Trust me, there are plenty of young readers who hunger for exactly that Guardian

Lake handles these difficult themes with great skill, making political points while never losing the balance between emotion and action. He captures Amy's sense of abandonment with moving sensitivity and maintains the plot tension throughout Daily Mail

About the Author

Nick Lake

Nick Lake lives near Oxford with his wife and family. He works in publishing by day and writes books in every spare moment he can find. His powerful and moving novel In Darkness, about the Haitian earthquake, won the 2013 Michael L. Printz Award and was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal. His second novel for Bloombury, Hostage Three, also received great acclaim.

Nick Lake Q&A:

Previous occupations:

Being a book editor. No one told me at school that there was a job where you got paid for being a fan of writers and writing.

High school and/or college:

I went to High School in Luxembourg, and I went to Oxford University after that for a degree and then a fairly pointless masters. In phonetics, of all things.

Name of your favourite composer or music artist?

I usually lie and go for something clever like Vertigo. But really it's True Romance.

I would use the word "busy" eight times.

What is your motto or maxim?
To paraphrase the existentialists - life is what you make it. Which amounts to a practical kind of karma, I suppose.

How would you describe perfect happiness?
A fire, a good chair and a new Stephen King book. Or the moment the soundchecks finish and the band take to the stage. Or sunset on the mountains, with weary feet, and the lights of a pub ahead. Or the sound of a breakbeat. Or a very sweet tea, anywhere in the Middle East, at any time of day.

What’s your greatest fear?
Not being good.

Which living person do you most admire?
Haruki Murakami. Stephen King. Anyone who works for Medecins sans Frontieres or Amnesty International.

What are your most overused words or phrases?

If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?
The abillity to play a musical instrument well. Also, the ability to speak all languages fluently.

What is your greatest achievement?
Meeting my wife.

If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?
I wouldn't mind being Simon Cowell. I could make The X-Factor go away. Not to mention R&B flavoured pop music.

What trait is most noticeable about you?
I have no idea. My hair? It's usually quite big, because I keep forgetting to have it cut. I look like the freakish son of Tom Hanks and David Hasselhoff.

Who is your favourite fictional hero?
Sally Lockhart.

Who is your favourite fictional villain?
Steerpike. (Also hero.)

If you could meet any historical character, who would it be and what would you say to him or her?
I'd like to meet Shakespeare and I'd ask him how to write better.

What is your favourite occupation, when you’re not writing?
Reading? Actually probably sleeping, to be honest.

What’s your fantasy profession?
Bestselling and universally admired author.

What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?
Compassion. Empathy. Humour.

If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?
Chocolate, in any form.

What are your 5 favourite songs?

On Books and Writing:

Who are your favourite authors?
Haruki Murakami. Stephen King. Neil Gaiman. Margaret Atwood. Joan Didion. Ismail Kadare. Philip Reeve. Philip Pullman. Meg Rosoff.

What are your 5 favourite books of all time?

Tough one. I guess... Middlemarch; Coraline; For Whom the Bell Tolls; the collected works of Shakespeare... and Little, Big, by John Crowley - the single most unfairly overlooked, beautiful, miraculous and magical book I know.

Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?
I wouldn't presume to think of myself as someone anyone might look to for advice! But I suppose I'd tell them to read as much as possible, in as many genres as possible.

What comment do you hear most often from your readers?
"You're very... imaginative aren't you." I think they mean I'm strange.

Nick Lake introduces There Will Be Lies:

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Book Info


400 pages
Interest Age: From 12


Nick Lake
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Bloomsbury Childrens an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC

Publication date

2nd January 2014




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