People talk a lot about the current vogue for dystopian YA. Well, Sleepwalking was exactly that, published nine years ago. And now (well, next Monday) it’s back! Partnered with another YA novel that will appeal to the same kind of intelligent readers, The Passionflower Massacre. Over the last fortnight, I serialised a few chapters of that. Today, I’m giving you just the opening two chapters of Sleepwalking. Click here.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway for chances to win signed copies of the print versions of Sleepwalking, Passionflower and Mondays are Red.
Sleepwalking had lots of fans and was shortlisted for several things. It even won the Scottish Children’s Book of the Year, voted by a committee made up from adults and teenagers. You can read it as a thriller or read it for the ideas. You can read it to identify with or understand Livia, who has some self-harming going on, or to decide whether you’d be brave enough to do what she and her friends have to do. Livia is a tricky personality, full of anger and emotion, quite damaged, yet resilient. She’s as resilient as I’d like to have been as a teenager.
I hope you like it! Publication one week today. Look out for the cheap intro-offer.
Special fact about Sleepwalking
The pupils of Liberton High School in Edinburgh took the task of launching the book as a Young Enterprise project, back in 2004. I believe this was the first time an author had worked with a school in that way,giving hem full responsibility for the promotion. My publishers (Hodder) and I handed the while thing over to them and they did a great job. I particularly remember a very enthusiastic boy called Jordan and it’s strange to think that he will be in his 20s now! After that, I did several school projects with my following books, including Deathwatch with The Mary Erskine School, who even helped me write it.
Some review coverage to give you a sense of Sleepwalking:
Books for Keeps: “This is an excellent sci-fi thriller, which also manages to articulate a passionate plea for literacy and dissent.”
The Independent: “… a turbulent story of revolt where it really matters – in this case, the overturning of a tyrannous state where humans are reduced to zombies. Nineteen Eighty-Four and Brave New World provide models for this awful society, whose all-powerful computers have come to be guided by these two stories. […]. This is Morgan’s third novel, and as before she writes with intelligence and feeling.”
The Scotsman: “… Sounds a bit like Nineteen Eighty-four? It’s meant to and Morgan plants echoes of other stories, such as Through the Looking Glass and Brave New World, throughout. This is a novel about the importance of language and individuality, and the power of ideas and stories. But you don’t need to recognise the references to enjoy the novel. It’s a fast-paced, thrilling sci-fi adventure in its own right.”
Guardian (Education – Book of the Week): “Nicola Morgan’s rich imagination means she’ll never be typecast. Her first novel, Mondays are Red, is hard to categorise as its subject is the very real, but very bizarre, condition synaesthesia. Fleshmarket is a historical thriller, and Sleepwalking casts her readers into a deeply spooky future, to a time in which people choose to live a life that is utterly controlled. … Morgan’s clever play on names and her mining of classics of the genre helps to make this an intriguing read, as well as a thrilling one.”
The Observer: “…post-apocalyptic world, sometime in the far-off future. … its whimsical mix of ingredients – too many to list here – makes it worth indulging. And there’s a pleasing twist in the tale.”
Sunday Herald: “Morgan is a verbal sculptress, creating images of vivid physicality so that the world of the Outsiders and Citizens is entirely credibly drawn, even disturbingly so. The twist at the end is chilling, even on re-reading, and establishes the possibility of a sequel.”
MEANWHILE – the deadline for the PFM/SLEEPWALKING prize draw is midday today. See here for details – and HURRY! The prize is pretty special. Don’t forget also to add “pick me” comments on twitter (just include my name @nicolamorgan in th tweet or I won’t see it!) and my Facebook author page.