Posted in Book Review

A Wish in the Dark

By Christina Soontornvat

Book Source: review copy provided as part of book publicity

Book Status: available March 24, 2020

A Wish in the Dark is set in a fantasy world but it seems a lot like ours. I was lucky enough to get the publicity booklet which explained some of names and places. Plus I sent Christina a question or two.

1. This is supposedly a middle grade retelling of Les Miserables. I am not sure because I haven’t read it but that is what Christina says.

2. There are two boys growing up in prison because of what their mothers did. Their mothers have died but they still have to stay until they are 13. This is a story of being punished for someone else’s action. Plus the women had done minor crimes to survive and where given long sentances.

3. There is a Governor who controls the city through the rules and the lights. This creates a world of the haves and the have nots. It is nearly impossible for the have nots to have a better life.

4. One boy escapes the prison and lives with monks for years. He returns to city and becomes part of movement for change.

5. There is girl who is a “have” but never feels good enough. In reality her parents have a secret about her that they are protecting.

6. I think this book pairs well with Padma Venkatramen A BRIDGE HOME. Both books are about living in a society of haves and have nots that were created by people. The people who create the system are afraid and use that fear to withhold things for control.

7. This is a book about resource sharing too. The Governor makes resources hard to access but one of the boys figures out how to make orbs (aka lights) more accessible.

8. I asked my mom to read this after I finished so I could discuss. I think this would be a good class or family read. There is so many discussions you can have.

I always feel special when I receive a book as part of the publicity campaign, especially for authors with a following. I will be passing this book on to another kid reviewer and buying a copy of to giveaway in a spring book giveaway.