Max and the Millions

Publisher: Faber

When a school caretaker mysteriously disappears, leaving behind a small pile of sand, a student is drawn into an extraordinary adventure.

Ten-year-old Max feels like an outsider at St Goliath’s. He is deaf, and while this doesn’t need to be a problem, the unlikable head ensures that it is, singling him out with a special seat in assembly and showing him off like an exhibit to visitors. He’s also clearly neglected to ensure Max’s peers understand how to foster normal, meaningful relationships with someone who happens to be deaf. 

Then Max makes a miraculous discovery – a tiny civilisation in the pile of sand on the caretaker’s floor. It’s a miniature world at war: three bickering tribes, nonsensically segregated according to hair colour. Can Max find his missing friend, communicate with the tribes and bring about peace?

Alongside the adventure, and with a light hand, Montgomery successfully touches on challenges such as coping with buzzing hearing aids, lazy assumptions about deafness, and people’s inept attempts to communicate better by shouting.

The plot is delightfully daft and complemented by many subtle social comments about inequality, the abuse of power and the futility of war.

More books like this

The Unexpected Find

Author: Toby Ibbotson

This intriguing novel weaves together the stories of three seemingly disparate characters to create a rich tapestry of mystery, myth and adventure. Extremely unusual and beautifully written, this is a compelling and moving read. 

Read more about The Unexpected Find

The Day I Was Erased

Author: Lisa Thompson

A strange turn of events transports Maxwell to a world where nobody, not even his parents or sister, recognise him. The Day I Was Erased captures the vibrancy and buzz of school life and will ultimately leave readers with a warm glow and lots of hope.

Read more about The Day I Was Erased

Share this book with your friends

Use our Bookfinder to discover the perfect children's books for every age...