All the Wind in the World

by Samantha Mabry

In this novel set in the not-too-distant future, Sarah and her boyfriend, James,... read more

In this novel set in the not-too-distant future, Sarah and her boyfriend, James, are working in the southwest, cutting maguey plants with other jimadors and saving their money in hopes of going east. They dream of raising horses. When an accident forces them to flee their jobs, they find work at a desert ranch rumored to be cursed. The two have learned not to let anyone know they are a couple—it can too easily be used against them—and in fact make a point to have James show interest in someone else. As laborers, Sarah, James, and other workers are at the mercy of landowners, and of one another. Knowing whom to trust can be a matter of life and death, and both Sarah and James manipulate others to survive, sometimes doing awful things. But do they also manipulate each other? Readers of this first-person narrative are allowed inside Sarah’s head—an exercise in both sympathy and abhorrence. James’s thoughts, feelings, and motives remain to some degree a mystery by story’s end, much like the seemingly supernatural elements also woven into this compelling narrative. With much potential for satisfying debate at the conclusion of this richly told tale, one in which the setting is a character as riveting as any other, the element that is undeniable from page one is the power and pull of its story. (Age 13 and older)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2018

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