by Malorie Blackman


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780552551946
Publisher: Transworld Publishers Limited
Publication date: 08/22/2006
Pages: 512
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 7.75(h) x 1.05(d)
Lexile: 630L (what's this?)
Age Range: 9 - 12 Years

About the Author

MALORIE BLACKMAN has written over fifty books and is acknowledged as one of today’s most imaginative and convincing writers for young readers. She has been awarded numerous prizes for her work, including the Red House Children’s Book Award and the Fantastic Fiction Award. Malorie has also been shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal. In 2005 she was honoured with the Eleanor Farjeon Award in recognition of her contribution to children’s books, and in 2008 she received an OBE for her services to children’s literature. She has been described by The Times as ‘a national treasure’. Malorie Blackman is the Children’s Laureate 2013–2015.

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Checkmate 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
brokenangelkisses on LibraryThing 8 months ago
After a predictable prologue to reveal a key piece of information, the opening chapter is stunning in its understated approach to horror: Callie Rose, a mixed race child in a racially intolerant world, is preparing to commit a shocking act at a young age. After this, the novel shifts continuously between the past and the present, including different viewpoints to allow you to witness over time the fragmentation of Callie's relationship with Sephy, her Cross mother, and her gradual disillusionment with her world. This is a well executed structure, which means that everything is clearly interconnected but Blackman is still able to surprise us along the way.After the depressing feel of 'Knife Edge', the second in the trilogy, this is a novel that has a steep path to climb to find some hope for the future, but Blackman manages, perhaps by sheer dint of emotional weight, to suggest possibilities through the believable but terrifying choices her characters are forced to make. As the resolution to the series, this book does include the requisite happy endings while still leaving some room to guess about romantic possibilities. The author's final pages seem designed to suggest that love is the key to all meaning, but the necessary actions of major characters suggest otherwise, leaving a slightly uncomfortable resolution in which Blackman could be seen to argue for the necessity of violence and betrayal. It is worth reading this novel simply to consider what message Blackman wants to put across and whether or not she succeeds. However, the clear language and engaging characters also make this a compelling read. Overall, this is an emotionally grueling series which sets up key parallels to encourage people to think again about the racially divided world which they inhabit, often thoughtlessly. However, it is not as simple as a treatise on racism; Blackman writes thoughtfully about human relationships and how we treat our families, our friends and our lovers, forcing us to recognise the unintended impacts that we can have on each other.
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