The Great White rained radiation from the skies, and much of the world was destroyed. What remained untouched were the lands far from the large cities. The people there were mostly farmers, and banded together to survive after the terrible holocaust. Over time, it became clear that the land and people had not been entirely untouched by the Great White, as people began to display strange powers. These people were named as Misfits, and if not killed outright, were sent to live far away from the normal folks, in councilfarms. The farthest away of these farms was Obernewtyn, where it was rumored that the doctor who had founded the place did experiments on the Misfits, to try and take away their power.
Elspeth Gordie is an Orphan, living on one of the orphan farms. She lives in constant fear that she will discovered, because she is a Misfit. She sometimes dreams the future, can read the mind of others, and has the ability to talk to animals. When the overseer of Obernewtyn comes to visit, she has a terrible foreboding, and the overseer does indeed discover her gifts. She’s swiftly whisked away to Obernewtyn.
Obernewtyn is an interesting place, high in the mountains. The denizens are a varied lot – some clearly evil, some clearly addled by their gifts. When one of Elspeth’s new friends disappears, it leads her on a quest to discover what’s going on in Obernewtyn, and reveals that Elspeth has a great destiny far beyond this place.
I’m actually rereading this book. I’d read it quite a while ago, back when I was actually in the young adult demographic. It’s clearly the beginning of a series, but I remember waiting to see if my library would purchase more, and when they didn’t, I forgot about the book. I found this copy used, and after a quick look online, was delighted to see there are five more books in their series. I’m quite looking forward to reading them. This book is a great set up for this post-apocalyptic land, and I look forward to seeing what happens next to Elspeth and her friends.