Kit's Wilderness

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by David Almond. Novel. 240 pages. Grades 5-7.
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Review

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Kit has recently moved to Stoneygate where his ancestors worked in the mines along with most of the other villagers. Evidence of the coalmines is everywhere but, most compellingly, it is in a monument on which are engraved the names of those who died in the mines. Kit's name is on it as he is named for a distant uncle. Likewise, the name of John Askew appears on the monument and his namesake has become a leader in a game of death played by the present-day children of the village. John's talent in drawing seems to fit particularly well with Kit's writing ability and there is mutual respect between the two dissimilar youths. The rituals surrounding this game, the tales told by those who have lain "dead" in the abandoned mine, become ever more important and it is inevitable that, sooner or later, Kit will take his turn being "dead."


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