LONGLISTED FOR THE NORTH SOMERSET TEACHERS' BOOK AWARD QUALITY FICTION CATEGORY
Louis Sacher is well known for 'There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroom' and 'Holes' amongst other wonderful titles. 'Fuzzy Mud' is very different, but equally thought provoking and challenging.
This is a novel about environmental issues, showing that an interference with the natural order can have disastrous consequences. The invention of Biolene, an alternative to petrol, is a man-made microorganism created at SunRay Farm.
Tamaya and Marshall go to Woodridge Academy. They walk to school together every day, but can't be seen together as Tamaya is younger. They NEVER go through the woods- until the day Marshall decides to take a short cut home. He's avoiding Chad- a bully who is making his life unbearable. However, Chad follows them and things take an unexpected turn...
The characters are really well developed and convincing, their personalities continuing to develop through the course of the book. The plot is clever and well structured, using notes from a top-secret Government enquiry to fill in gaps in the reader's knowledge seamlessly. The multiplying microorganisms and the maths problems all help to make this book unique!
So much could be done with this book in the classroom. There is so much to discuss, debate and write about. Newspaper reports and articles, persuasive leaflets, television shows, interviews...all manner of writing and role play could come from the environmental theme. Bullying is also explored and there are many opportunities to explore characters' actions and reactions.
Science topics, maths investigations... there are many cross curricular possibilities to be explored as well.
You can find out about Louis Sacher's inspiration for this story at: http://www.louissachar.com/inspiration-for-fuzzy-mud.html
Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sacher
Bloomsbury ISBN: 978-1408864746