Mock Printz booktalk: Railhead by Philip Reeve

What follows is a booktalk for a title on our Mock Printz shortlist. We hope you’ll be able to join us at the event where our winner will be chosen! This booktalk was written by Susan Smallsreed of Multnomah County Library.

The cover for the book Railhead by Philip ReeveZen Starling is a thief. He’s pretty good at it too. Until the day a red head dressed in a trench coat follows him across the galaxy to his home. He had hopped the rails as usual and zipped across the cosmos on the Interstellar Express, a sentient train that travels planet to planet using wormholes that only the Guardians understand. He was sure that he had lost her when the train passed through the first gate. Everyone knows that nothing can follow through a dark hole. But, surprise, surprise, the redhead is soon standing outside his crummy apartment on his home world. Zen may be a thief, but he will do anything to protect his disabled mother and bossy older sister, including leaving home. But can he run far enough and fast enough to evade the trench coat? Who, or what, is she? The police? A rival thief? More importantly, if she’s not police, what does she want?

It’s the latest adventure by Philip Reeve, author of Fever Crumb and the Mortal Engines trilogy, and the start of a new action-packed, interstellar chase across space in a far future world filled with rebels and robots.