Books by Livi Michael

Livi Michael has published four award-winning novels for adults and a few children’s books in England.

CITY OF DOGS by Livi Michael
Released: Sept. 1, 2007

A wise and witty animal fantasy wherein none of the dogs die. A beautiful, dog mysteriously appears on young Sam's birthday, with a mistletoe dart in her teeth and a confused but urgent sense of mission. Christened Jenny, she becomes accustomed to our world, with its electricity, automobiles and unfriendliness to dogs; and she comes to love Sam and five neighbor dogs as her own pack. But as Jenny's memories of her old life slowly fade, Fenris the Wolf starts to howl and Ragnorak is unleashed. Now six dogs and one boy must prevent the destruction of all Nine Worlds. Nimbly threading her plot between four separate narratives and three different mythologies, Michael provokes in quick succession gasps of amazement, snorts of laughter and tears of aching grief. Above all, she clearly knows and loves dogs—not the idealized noble canines of fiction, but realistic dogs who are excitable and foolish and fearful and slow, dogs who chew papers and widdle on floors and grow old and smelly. But these dogs are also brave and loyal and loving beyond all human deserving—except when we create new worlds that are almost worthy of them, in stories like this. Simply perfect. (Fantasy. 10-14)Read full book review >
Released: May 1, 2005

In this action-packed historical page-turner, destitute siblings Joe and Annie (a trance medium) escape from an apprenticeship with an abusive farmer and make their way to Manchester, hoping to find their mother. It's 1830s England, and the kids survive with help from a self-sufficient philosophical tramp, an enigmatic Dog-woman, performers in a traveling fair and a clandestine radical newspaper publisher. Danger and abject poverty lurk in every corner of this sweeping, episodic narrative, under which swirls the author's keen interest in the history of the urban poor and social reform. She tackles a great deal—deaths of workhouse children, the great cholera epidemic, the repeal of the stamp tax and the complicated class issues endemic to Manchester, an industrial "feudal city" on the verge of change—though often provides only a surface introduction to the complex matters of those times. It is the value of a good story that's at the heart of this adventurous 19th-century tale, and Michael via her intrepid protagonist Joe tells a swell one. (author's note, glossary) (Historical fiction. 10 )Read full book review >