by Mal Peet, Meg Rosoff


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From Carnegie Medal–winning author Mal Peet comes a sweeping coming-of-age adventure, both harrowing and life-affirming.

Born of a brief encounter between a Liverpool prostitute and an African soldier in 1907, Beck finds himself orphaned as a young boy and sent overseas to the Catholic Brothers in Canada. At age fifteen he is sent to work on a farm, from which he eventually escapes. Finally in charge of his own destiny, Beck starts westward, crossing the border into America and back, all while the Great Depression rages on. What will it take for Beck to understand the agonies of his childhood and realize that love is possible?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780763678425
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Publication date: 04/11/2017
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.10(d)
Lexile: 790L (what's this?)
Age Range: 16 - 18 Years

About the Author

Mal Peet (1947–2015) was a critically acclaimed and award-winning writer. Besides his young-adult fiction, he wrote several illustrated books for younger children with his wife, Elspeth Graham.

Meg Rosoff is the author of How I Live Now, winner of the Michael L. Printz Award. She also received the Carnegie Medal and the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award and was named a National Book Award Finalist. Meg Rosoff completed Mal Peet’s unfinished novel, a promise she made him before he died. She lives in London.

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Beck 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
WhisperingStories More than 1 year ago
Liverpool 1907, Anne Beck had just been sacked from her job. On her way home Anne passed a black man stood outside the local pub, as the landlord had refused to serve him. His white shipmates had bought him a drink and a bite to eat, this is what lured her towards him. She took him home with her where they had one night of passion, and then he was gone. The result of that night of passion was born nine months later, Beck. When he was eleven years old, his mother caught the flu and subsequently died, meaning that Beck was sent to a Catholic orphanage. Over the coming years Beck was treated harrowingly. Starting off in Canada, where him and a few of his orphanage friends were sent to stay with priests until the time would come for them to find new homes. Filled with anger and mistrust, did Beck ever get out of the cycle of hardship and cruelty, to become a man who was capable of love, and a happy ending? Firstly, I need to give potential readers a warning. This book has been marked as a Young Adult book, but with graphic scenes of violence, plus emotional, and sexual abuse, I would say this book is not suitable for those under 16. Yes, it is a story true to life and these things happen, but it does leave images in your head, that even I at 39 years old I could not shift for a few days. The book does have you thinking about life and the hardships that black people endured, having been deemed second class citizens and looked down on by society. Beck himself though is a mixed bag, his story is filled with emotion, but at times the writing was a little lacking, meaning that I didn’t always connect with him. The book takes you to some dark places, and yet at times also gives you an uplift. It is thought-provoking, and tough to read in parts, but if you get the chance, I feel that this is going to be one of those books that in the future will become a modern day classic. I’m just sorry that Mal Peet didn’t live long enough to see the end result of his book. Beck was completed by his good friend, Meg Rosoff.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ben smiled at his uncle as he gently scooped up the child and nodded. "It went great. Thank you so much, uncle Henry." He gave him a nod before heading around the house to his car. Chris gave Haddi's hand a squeeze as he followed after her. Eliot gurgled up at Ben before turning to look at Haddi and lifting his arms to her with a wide smile.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago