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Lynn’s life is full choir practice, school, shopping for the perfect jeans, and dealing with her free-spirited mother. Then one day her life is saved by a mysterious girl named Blossom, who introduces Lynn to her own world and family both more bizarre, yet somehow more sane, than Lynn’s own. Blossom’s family is a small band of outcasts and eccentrics who live secretly in an ingenious bunker beneath a city reservoir. The Underlanders forage and trade for the things they need (Is it useful or lovely?”), living off the things Citizens” throw away. Lynn is enchanted and amazed. But when she inadvertently reveals their secret, she is forced to take measure of her own motives and lifestyle, as she figures out what it really means to be a family and a friend. This novel is smart, rich, engaging and insightful.
Recently nominated for the prestigious Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, children’s literature’s richest prize, Sarah Ellis teaches in the MFA program at Vermont College of Fine Arts. She lives in Vancouver.