The Pox Party

The Pox Party

Audiobook CD - 2007
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Octavian Nothing is raised by a group of rational philosophers known only by numbers. He and his mother are the only people in their household assigned names. Young Octavian begins to question the purpose behind his guardians' fanatical studies, only after he dares to open a forbidden door does he learn the hideous nature of their experiments.
Publisher: New York : Random House/Listening Library, [2007]
Edition: Library edition
Copyright Date: ℗2007
ISBN: 9780739348468
Branch Call Number: CD YA ANDERSO
Characteristics: 7 audio discs (approximately 72 min. each) : digital ; 4 3/4 in
Additional Contributors: James, Peter Francis

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WVMLStaffPicks Jun 04, 2013

Set during the Revolutionary War, a young African slave named Octavian is raised by a group of enigmatic, undeniably creepy scholars in an institution called the Novanglian College of Lucidity. Octavian is schooled in Latin, Greek and the classical arts and comes to view the odd peculiarities of his upbringing as normal—until he opens a forbidden door and discovers the real reason he is being housed at the College. At times disturbing, grotesque, bizarrely funny and written in rich prose, this examination of race and rebellion will challenge readers of all ages.

k
kalio
May 18, 2009

M.T. Anderson?s other books (Thirsty, Burger Wuss, Feed) have all been books for young adults; it makes sense that his newest title is a teen book too. But that Octavian Nothing is different is apparent at first glance. Octavian is a young boy living in Boston on the eve of the Revolutionary War. Raised in isolation by a strange group of philosophers and scientists, Octavian doesn?t understand his place or purpose in the world?until one day when he does, and he is horrified. M.T. Anderson gives us a world and a set of characters that don?t know the outcome of the Colonies? war with England, and that have some very difficult choices to make. Octavian Nothing forces us to ask a new set of questions about what we thought we knew?questions about history, hypocrisy, and personal choice--that are worth asking whether we took American History last year or last decade. The sequel, Volume II: Kingdom on the Waves, was published in 2008.

12/24/2009:
The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation is a novel in two volumes that explores the American Revolution from a new point-of-view: that of an African American boy. When the founding fathers declared independence from British rule, they did so in the name of freedom from oppression. This is certainly something of a hypocrisy when you consider that the grand notion of freedom did not extend to the large population of African slaves who also called America their home. Octavian is a young boy living in Boston on the eve of the revolution. Raised in near-isolation by a strange group of philosophers and scientists, Octavian receives a classical education of the finest order. Despite his privileged childhood, there?s a carefully guarded secret regarding this boy and when that secret is one day revealed, Octavian is horrified. He rebels against the men who have cared for him, only to find that his unusual upbringing has left him woefully unprepared to meet the prejudices of the real world. Octavian finds himself in the unique position of being forced to face a frightening future even while grappling with the terrors of his past?and with no time to linger in the present. There is a war on, after all, and Octavian must choose the lesser of two evils?the ruling British or the rebelling Americans, both of whom are making promises that all parties know can?t be kept. Author M.T. Anderson presents a way of life and a set of characters that don?t know the outcome of the Colonies? war with England, and that have some very difficult choices to make. Anderson tells Octavian?s history in a forthright, intimate voice with no frills attached, and it is a story that the reader will feel utterly compelled to explore. The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation asks a new set of questions about the history we thought we knew, questions that are worth asking whether we took American History last year or last decade.

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