The Garbage King
Publisher: Macmillan Children's books
When Mamo, a homeless orphan, meets wealthy runaway Dani on the streets of Addis Ababa, the boys’ mutual desperation leads to an unlikely friendship.
This pacy coming-of-age adventure concentrates on the private hopes, dreams and feelings that drive its characters along, but also keeps enough sense of the gritty realities of street life to give a thought-provoking humanitarian message.
Elizabeth Laird uses an absorbing plot and edgy portrayal of adolescent gang life to moving but unsentimental effect. This is another compelling book from a well-regarded novelist who tackles social injustice in a commendably reader-focused way.