Marvelous Middle Grade Monday
A Wish in the Dark (Candlewick Press, 2020) by Christina Soontornvat is my favorite read so far this year!
Pong was born in Nomwan Prison. He and his best friend and Somkit stare at the lights of Chattana–the city that one man, the Governor, brought light to after the great fire. If only they could escape there.
Nok is the daughter of the prison warder. She and her family are at Nomwan because the Governor is coming to visit. To her shock the young Pong approaches the Governor.
Pong thinks that such a good man as the Governor will see how unfair it is for children born to prisoners to be imprisoned. But when the Governor doesn’t agree, all that’s left to Pong is to escape, which he does.
Nok’s father is blamed for Pong’s escape and she wants to capture him to restore her family’s name. But secrets she discovers in her quest make her question everything she’s ever known.
Who will win in this unfair world?
The story has many surprising twists and turns. This Thai-inspired fantasy is a 2021 Newbery Honor book–I can’t believe I didn’t read it sooner. Plus, it has won other awards and been put on many lists. See those here.
Christina has written a number of award winning books in a variety of categories–read more about her here and see all her books here.