Monday, February 7, 2011

nothing: a novel by janne teller

"Nothing matters.
I have known that for a long time.
So nothing is worth doing.
I just realized that."

And so begins this dark tale set in Denmark. Seventh grader Pierre Anthon's declaration has rendered life meaningless for his classmates, so they decide to build a heap of 'meaning' to prove him wrong. Each student adds something they love to the pile, chosen by the previous donor. As the heap of meaning builds, the additions get nastier: a girl's virginity, someone's pet hamster, a dog's head, and a multitude of equally grisly objects pile up as the kids desperately try to refute Pierre's claim. A sometimes shocking and unforgettable read; an excellent choice for a young adult book club looking for thought-provoking titles. Winner of Le Prix LibbyLit 2008 for best children's novel published in French, the Danish Cultural Ministry's Prize 2001 for best children's book of the year, and a host of other awards. Click here for a video of Janne accepting le Prix LibbyLit.Grade 7+