The Last Bookstore
Brooke Purdy and Colette Freedman
The only defense against extinction is knowledge.¯ In the post apocalyptic world, an electro magnetic pulse has decimated the power grid. The remaining survivors split into various factions of a new society. The Landers¯, farmers who live in the outskirts of the city, Underfolk - a rumored group of cannibals who live in the tunnels beneath the city and Blighters¯ - a diseased, barbaric gang who control the old cities and lead by Xander, their dictator and demagogue. Jack (12) and his little sister Beckett (9) are Landers, whose mother Avery is dying of the Bleeds- a seemingly incurable disease and just one of the effects of the elimination of modern medicine. The only way to save her is with information...found in an abandoned bookstore in dangerous Blighter territory.
Jack tells Beckett to stay behind as he sets off with his best friends; athletic Logan, Logan's deaf little brother Digits and chubby, digestively-challenged Mateo. Their journey starts easily as they discuss kissing girls and burp abilities but when they get to the deep forest, they are confronted by rabid coyotes. Fighting them with homemade slingshots- they are ultimately saved by Beckett- the best shot of the bunch- who has followed them against Jack's wishes.
The group reaches the underground tunnels and soon get trapped in a net where they face possible consumption by the mythical, cannibalistic Unders. They quickly discover that the Unders are actually a group of powerful women, led by the charismatic Blue. Though Blue and Beckett bond almost instantly, Jack senses something is amiss with the seemingly peaceful group. As they prepare to leave, the Unders fall under attack by the Blighters, with whom they had an uneasy truce.
The kids escape, led out of the tunnels by fourteen year old Nyx. Blue offers Xander donors' to appease him and maintain their truce: Xander is a hemophiliac who drains healthy blood to support his own life. Yet, he wants his daughter Nyx and tells Blue he will destroy her self sufficient underground if she doesn't help him find her.
At the bookstore, the kids find the needed medical information; yet, before they can bring the books back to safety, Xander arrives for Nyx. He captures everyone except the hidden Logan and starts to prepare them for harvesting¯. Logan sets off a series of explosions. The kids escape and lead Xander on a chase back to the Landers where a small posse of concerned parents are waiting. Xander and his Blighters plan to annihilate them; however, Blue and her Unders arrive and, together, they chase off the Blighters. The kids get the medical books (hidden in the boys' pants) in the nick of time. Back at the bookstore, Xander plots his revenge. This is not the end.
Copyright 2017 Brooke Purdy and Colette Freedman