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Sleator, William
New York : Dutton, 1974
IL 5-8 RL 6.0
ISBN 0140345809
Peter is a 16 year old living in an orphanage. One day he is called into the main office and taken out blindfolded. He is brought to a place so strange , that he can't understand it. There are only stairs with small landings -- no rooms or hallways. Soon he is joined by 4 others who are also orphans and who were also brought in blindfolded. The five teens wander the stairs looking for a way out. On one landing, they find a small machine that gives food but only when Blossom sticks out her tongue. The others must depend on Blossom for food. After awhile, the machine stops responding to Blossom and the group tries other ways to get food. They make up dances and the machine responds. Each time the teens figure out how to get food, the machine changes the rules. As the teens get frustrated, they start turning on each other. The machine then demands more and more acts of anger and violence before it will give food. As they realize what is happening, they must decide if it is better to starve than become subhuman. This is a story of science misused.
SUBJECTS:     Science fiction


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