Books by Marja Gass

Released: June 1, 2010

Storm isn't a bad boy, but he's "not a good one either." Graffiti, skateboarding and forbidden train journeys get him forcibly enrolled at the last-ditch School of Possibilities. There, Storm's life degenerates into increasingly nightmarish, magical-realist twists. His fellow students are excruciatingly obedient, even as they have sports, hobbies and girlfriends assigned as punishments. His parents, a wedding-dress seamstress and a Russian chef, both vanish mysteriously. The only bright spot in Storm's heavily controlled life (he's barricaded into his room nightly) is his friendship with the street children India, Mew, Ra and Moon. Squatting in a derelict biscuit factory, the runaways urge Storm to solve the terrible mystery of The School of Possibilities before it's too late for him—or anyone else. Though brief moments will ring problematically for American readers ("She could have been a Native American chief...[or] a bird or some long-extinct human species"), the dark, richly detailed setting of this Finlandia Junior Prize nominee will capture imaginations. Ikonen's illustrations accentuate the surrealist horror as the tale spirals into thriller. (Surrealism. 11-13)Read full book review >