A boy sits in a cold, bare shack somewhere north of the Arctic Circle, alone but for his father's body lying on a table, frozen both by rigor mortis and the manner of his death. The boy's older sister and stepmother have gone for help. And then there is a knock on the door: outside is a giant of a man asking for the boy's father.Revolver is a very short book, just 200 pages. It can be read in one sitting, which is good because it is so taut and tense I never wanted to put it down. Every word in this psychological thriller seems necessary and purposeful. It's opening line sets the stage for the tension that follows: "Even the dead tell stories." Sig must discover what his dead father has to tell him in order to survive himself.
This is as stark a beginning as you can imagine. And it gets worse. The giant is convinced that the dead man has stolen his gold. He isn't going to leave without it – and he has a gun. But so in a way does Sig, the boy. -Mary Hoffman for The Guardian.co.uk
Several reviewers say that this is a coming-of-age story. I don't disagree though I think of it more as a survival story and so much more. When asked by students what the book is about I tell them it is about a revolver, a gun, which plays as important role in the book as any other character. Obviously the title, Revolver, will attract male readers, which I'm always looking for, but I think it will have general appeal to all readers, including adults.Whether this book wins a Printz Award or not in January, I will be purchasing additional copies to place on my Nifty-Fifty Book Cart. I hope by doing this as many students as possible read this book. You should, too!