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By Laurel Gale
Crown Books for Young Readers
Crow Darlingson isn’t like other kids. He stinks. He’s got maggots. His body parts fall off at inopportune moments. And he hasn’t been able to sleep in years. Not since waking up from death.
Despite the maggots, Crow is lonely. When Melody Plympton moves in next door, Crow finally has a chance at friendship and a shot at getting his life back from the mysterious, wish-granting creature living in the park. But first, there are tests to pass. And it means risking the only friend he’s had in years.
PRAISE FOR DEAD BOY
“A stinky, creepy tale for anyone who’s ever felt like an outsider.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Gale takes readers on a dark and surprisingly funny journey. . . . A great recommendation to middle grade fans of dark humor.”—School Library Journal
Top Ten Reasons Life Should Be Like a Middle Grade Novel
- Middle grade novels are never boring. Any potentially boring parts are described in an amusing way or else completely skipped over. When I’m stuck in traffic or waiting in line at the bank, I definitely wish life were more like a middle grade novel.
- Middle grade novels are stuffed to the brim with adventure. Have you ever wanted to go on a quest? Fight a monster? Travel to magical lands? Find buried treasure? In middle grade novels, that kind of stuff happens all the time.
- Middle grade novels are full of mystery. When the heroes aren’t busy with daring adventures, they’re solving crimes or answering ancient riddles. Mental exercise is supposed to help keep the brain active and healthy, and who doesn’t love a good puzzle?
- Middle grade novels are pretty funny. Even the ones that aren’t comedies usually have a few humorous observations or conversations. Real life dialogue should be so witty.
- In middle grade novels, anything is possible. There could be aliens, wizards, monsters, or dinosaurs around every corner. I’ve never seen these things in real life, but I imagine it would be very exciting.
- Middle grade novels are safe. Yes, things can turn quite scary at times, but we know everything will work out, maybe not exactly as we wanted, but for the best. In real life, I might not want to face that dinosaur or monster after all.
- In middle grade novels, conflicts always have satisfactory resolutions. There’s no real chance of crimes going unsolved or villains going undefeated. By the last page, misunderstandings are always cleared up and battles are always won. In real life, such guarantees would be nice.
- In middle grade, friends and family are all that matters. Characters might get distracted by money, fame, or competition, but in the end, they know what’s important. In real life, we should focus on our loved ones, too.
- Middle grade novels are optimistic. Sure, they can get pretty sad and even dark at times, but there’s always hope. Of course, real life has hope, too, but sometimes we need reminding.
- In middle grade novels, even the shy bookworm nobody notices can end up being a hero. In real life—well, in real life, that’s true, too. Maybe life already is like a middle grade novel.
About the Authorwebsite
Like Crow, Laurel Gale resides in the Nevada desert. She lives with her husband and a band of furry monsters that might actually be ferrets, her favorite animal.