A big-hearted dystopian novel about the corrosive
effects of fear and the redemptive power of love
With soaring literary prose
and the tense pacing of a thriller, the first-time novelist Peyton Marshall
imagines a grim and startling future. At the end of the twenty-first century—in
a transformed America—the sons of convicted felons are tested for a set of
genetic markers. Boys who test positive become compulsory wards of the
state—removed from their homes and raised on “Goodhouse” campuses, where they
learn to reform their darkest thoughts and impulses. Goodhouse is a savage
place—part prison, part boarding school—and now a radical religious group, the
Holy Redeemer’s Church of Purity, is intent on destroying each campus and
purifying every child with fire.
We see all this through the
eyes of James, a transfer student who watched as the radicals set fire to his
old Goodhouse and killed nearly everyone he’d ever known. In addition to
adjusting to a new campus with new rules, James now has to contend with
Bethany, a brilliant, medically fragile girl who wants to save him, and with
her father, the school’s sinister director of medical studies. Soon, however,
James realizes that the biggest threat might already be there, inside the
fortified walls of Goodhouse itself.
Partly based on the true
story of the nineteenth-century Preston School of Industry, Goodhouse explores questions of identity
and free will—and what it means to test the limits of human endurance. Download and start listening now!