FOURTH WORLD by Kate Thompson


Book One in the Missing Link Trilogy
Age Range: 11 - 13
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Thompson launches a new series that explores the boundaries between human and animal. Having lived with his older, seemingly mentally impaired foster brother, Danny, long enough to feel protective, Christie tags along when Danny suddenly sets out to join Maggie, his mysterious birth mother, in Scotland. Several factors affect Christie’s efforts to abort the expedition, most notably the appearance of Darling and Oggy, a starling and a dog who can think and talk, and whom Maggie has sent to be companions for the journey. Thanks to rough weather and widespread panic due to a major petroleum crisis, that journey almost turns deadly. But Christie finds his greatest challenge at its end: Maggie turns out to be a near-future Dr. Moreau, living on a farm populated not only by animals whose DNA has been implanted with a gene that governs human speech and intelligence, but also with a human child who is part animal—as is Danny. Thompson’s genetics are simplistic and she begs the question of how birds and a dog could speak clear English—but she weaves some stimulating ideas into this suspenseful tale and leaves plenty of unanswered questions for future installments. (Fiction. 11-13)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2005
ISBN: 1-58234-650-X
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 2005


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