Break­ing into a new world

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Reads -

AMER­I­CAN au­thor Dave Eg­gers is well-known for set­ting his best­selling books around the globe – ev­ery­where from his home in the Bay Area of San Fran­cisco and Costa Rica to north­ern and eastern Africa and Saudi Ara­bia.

Now, he’s cho­sen yet an­other new set­ting: where pri­mary school stu­dents live. Yes, Dave Eg­gers’ next lit­er­ary ad­ven­ture will be for a younger crowd.

The fan­tasy novel The Lifters, is the first of a two-book deal with pub­lish­ers Al­fred A. Knopf.

The Lifters is sched­uled for March 27, 2018, the pub­lisher says. Fea­tur­ing il­lus­tra­tions by broth­ers Eric and Terry Fan, the book tells of a trou­bled boy named Gran­ite and a girl named Catalina who through a magic door han­dle in­tro­duces the boy to a strange new world.

“The Lifters has been on my mind for al­most 10 years,” Eg­gers said in a state­ment.

“That’s when I had the idea that a sim­ple cup­board han­dle could open a hill­side to a war­ren of kid-sized tun­nels un­der a town – and that it would be up to these kids to keep every­one liv­ing above­ground upright and safe.

“My goal was to write the book I would have wanted to read when I was a mid­dle-grader, with enough ad­ven­ture and jokes and mys­tery to keep even an antsy reader en­gaged.”

Eg­gers’ first book, A Heart­break­ing Work Of Stag­ger­ing Ge­nius (2000), is a part au­to­bi­o­graph­i­cal, part fic­tional chron­i­cle of his ste­ward­ship of younger brother Christopher, or “Toph”, fol­low­ing the can­cer-re­lated deaths of his par­ents. Eg­gers was 21 at the time, his brother, eight.

The book came out to great crit­i­cal and com­mer­cial suc­cess, reach­ing No.1 on The New York Times best­seller list and be­ing nom­i­nated as a fi­nal­ist for the Pulitzer Prize for gen­eral non­fic­tion. Time mag­a­zine dubbed it “The Best Book of the Year” while the Lon­don Times chose it as the 12th best book of the decade. – AP

— AP

The Lifters is the first book Eg­gers has writ­ten for chil­dren.

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