“This double-helix-of-a-story explores the nature of freedom, humanity, survival and hope. A dark journey well worth taking—engrossing, disturbing, illuminating.” — Kirkus Reviews
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By Nick Lake
Reading level: Ages 14 and up
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens;
1 edition (January 17, 2012)
Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.4 x 1.2 inches
Bloomsbury is proud to publish In Darkness, a stunning tour-de-force set
in the aftermath of a disaster that shook the world.
Author Nick Lake introduces us to “Shorty,” a 14-year-old boy who is trapped and clinging desperately to life beneath the rubble of the devastating Haiti earthquake. As he cries out to be rescued, he also cries out for his story to be heard. It is the account of his seemingly mystical birth and tragic childhood, as well as his near-inevitable entry into the complicated world of Haitian gangs, on which the people of Haiti’s slums rely for their survival.
Shorty’s reality may seem familiar to many of us (he listens to Tupac and Biggie Smalls) but it’s in a world entirely unlike our own—searching for his kidnapped sister and eating cakes of mud to survive.
But as Shorty’s story unfolds, his life is also seen to have inextricable ties to that of Haitian revolutionary Toussaint L’Ouverture, a former slave who led the country out of bondage and into independence many generations before.
Across a span of two hundred years, the stories of Shorty and L’Ouverture intertwine, offering an unparalleled glimpse into both the beauty and tragedy of a country torn apart by violence and continuing valiantly in its struggle to survive.
Nick Lake is the editorial director
for fiction for HarperCollins Children’s Books UK and the author of two
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