The Wikkeling by Steven Arntson

The WikkelingBooks set in future dystopias are all the rage right now. Usually society has become degenerate and evil, with a veneer of civility and promise. Only angry hormonal teenagers who are in love with multiple people at once can see the cracks in the facade!

What do you do, though, if a slightly younger reader doesn’t like romance, and isn’t angry, and would rather not believe that human beings are innately evil (except for a chosen angsty few)? Give them this book.

Henrietta isn’t a very good student, and she isn’t a very popular person. She just gets by, sort of, in her elementary school classes, and at home. Her grades and whereabouts are continually broadcast to her parents via their phones, children log in and out of their classrooms and bus seats, and hyper-safety and technology are prized above all else. Not horrible; not exciting; not memorable.

Henrietta’s non-safe and non-technological adventure starts when she discovers a trapdoor into her attic, and within the attic, a wild housecat. This first foray into the unknown leads her to form friendships with two other unusual children and, with them, into an exploration of the history of her town, and the town’s putative guardian, the frightening Wikkeling.

A truly original book, scary without being gruesome and showing a believable, realistic society only one step from our own, this book is highly recommended for children in late elementary school.

Posted by: Sarah


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