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I have to admit I have never read anything like this book before. A Nazi regime type society in the fifties, in Great Britain where the country is divided into zones but where an amazing young man, who also happens to be dyslexic and not overly bright, lives. Standish Treadwell, a character I will not soon forget, loves metaphors and tries to do the right thing in a place where knowing how to do that is not easy or often rewarded. This novel is brutal and though YA, definitely not for the younger group of that genre, killings and beatings, people go missing, children are killed but those remaining try to foil the plans of the Motherland every chance they get. The book is a complete package, with small illustrations in black and white of flies, rats and poison. I found out it was almost like one of those flicker books, with the pictures moving when the pages are flipped. The book did not have a solid sense of connection, never explains how it got this way or why, that could be a problem for some readers, but for me I just loved Standish Treadwell and his grandpa.