Wednesday 5 September 2012

Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner

Pages - 266
Published by Hot Key Books on the 6th of September 2012
Book kindly sent by publisher for an honest review.

I am wondering what if.
What if the football hadn't gone over the wall.
What if Hector had never gone looking for it.
What if he hadn't kept the dark secret to himself.
What if...
Then I suppose I would be telling myself another story.
You see, the what ifs are as boundless as the stars.

Goodreads Summary
When his best friend Hector is suddenly taken away, Standish Treadwell realises that it is up to him, his grandfather and a small band of rebels to confront and defeat the ever present oppressive forces of The Motherland. 

Friendship and trust inspire Standish to rise up against an oppressive regime and expose the truth about a planned moon landing in this original and spellbinding book.
Sally Gardner's name is synonymous with written perfection. If ever an author contemplates every word she writes, then it is definitely Sally. I can pick up one of her books without reading the blurb and know instantly I am about to be transformed to another time and place, where I will watch a painting of words unfold. 
I was so excited to see that Sally Gardner was bringing out another book, which came about after researching her previous novel - The Double Shadow, which I adored.
Within Maggot Moon, Sally Gardner takes the concept of the first man on the moon and turns it on its head, exploring the conspiracy theories that now surround the original moon walk many years ago. After reading this book, I came away convinced that what I had witnessed as a child was a form of brain washing and I am now full of doubts that the moon landing every actually happened.
The author has been very clever with her interpretation of the moon landing, setting it in an alternative to the present day - we get a glimpse of the way the world might have been if Germany had won World War II, at least that is how I have interpreted the book. The way the characters are in hiding were reminiscent of the Jewish people hiding during the war.  I found the German influence to be fascinating yet it was heart wrenching to realise how the Jewish people must have been treated.
The book also explores the subject of dyslexia, which I know is a subject close to the author's heart. The main character Standish has a strong voice with a vivid imagination and this book allows you to visualise how it might feel to be dyslexic. As you walk alongside Standish, you realise how his dyslexia affects his life in certain areas, but allows him to excel in other subjects - he isn't held back by his dyslexia.
I love the way the author uses metaphors, her expressions were original and immensely creative. The author very cleverly related every day situations to aspects of astronomy as you read through the book.
On finishing this book, I found myself reflecting what I had read. It isn't the kind of book you can read and just add to a pile; you will find yourself wanting to know more, wanting to explore the themes and subjects highlighted in this book.
Sally Gardner has yet again proved to me that she is an exceptional writer and one who I will always look forward to with heightened anticipation. 


  1. Replies
    1. Not many books do, so I think Sally has really hit on an excellent subject here.

  2. This does sound highly imaginative and creative. It brings Shel Silverstein to mind. I'm glad you enjoyed it so much, Vivienne.

  3. This isn't my normal kind of thing, but the fact it covers dyslexia and is full of metaphors and expressiony things makes me think I'll enjoy it. Great review!

    1. Sally Gardner is one of those authors that quietly slips in but makes a huge impact. You must read it.


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