by David Almond - £9.99 Penguin Books Ltd (2012)
paperback ISBN 13: 9780670919062 | ISBN 10: 0670919063
For fans of Room by Emma Donoghue, an extraordinary novel about a child who is kept incarcerated - from the bestselling, prizewinning author of Skellig.
Billy Deane is the child of an illicit relationship between a priest and a young hairdresser. He is born on the very day that terrorists attack his town, and the fact that he survives and flourishes persuades his father that he is a special child with special gifts. Even so, Billy's birth can't be made public, and he spends his chidhood in a single room, dreaming of other worlds, occasionally visited at night by his father. When the visits come to a sudden end, his mother decides it's time for Billy to come out into the world, helped by a couple of friendly townspeople, and soon he finds that his supposed gifts bring him a certain celebrity. But his father hasn't gone for good, and there's a terrible reckoning still to be made.
David Almond's first adult novel is a brilliant account of a child long kept hidden from the world who finally finds that he can establish his place in it - only to be confronted with a past that won't go away.
(Price & availability last checked: July 2019)