C L I F F
N I S H
Cliff McNish is the author
of many books for children and young adults, most recently Angel and Breathe. He is married and has a teenage daughter, for whose entertainment he made up his first stories.
I uttered the word
Praise for Cliff McNish’s Breathe “This is a well-crafted story that is weightier than the standard chiller. Filled with suspense, it will keep readers riveted to the pages.”—SLJ
Praise for Cliff McNish’s Angel “McNish[’s]…real accomplishment is melding the gritty ordinariness of everyday happenings with the magnificence of angels. For this, he needed the skills of a conductor, knowing when to play up the angelic choir and when to let it be heavenly background music….[R]eaders are given much to ponder.”
And my throat . . . reacted.
As soon as the second syllable left my
A s und ...
and flowed from deep inside my throat.
—Booklist, starred review
“McNish is an author to watch.”—SLJ
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Savanna h Gr ey needs to keep moving. She doesn’t know why, but she can’t let
herself get tied down by too many people. It’s almost like she’s being chased by something. And now something strange is happening with her neck—with her throat.
Savanna h Gr ey never thought she’d meet someone like Reece—a guy who seems
to understand her. He even knows about her neck. The same thing is happening to him. It’s as if their voices are becoming weapons, warming up for some kind of attack.
S G has no idea what might be chasing her or why her voice suddenly feels like the most powerful weapon on the planet, but she’s about to find out. Nature is preparing for battle with the universe’s ultimate monster. The time to fight is almost here.
The weapon is Savanna h Gr ey
7. What is the one thing that the Ocrassa has never experienced? How does it hinder its ability to fight Savannah? 8. How was the Ocrassa created and how did it become so powerful? What would you fear most about the Ocrassa if you were in Savannah’s position? 9. Does the Nyktomoroph like the Ocrassa? Give specific examples from the book to prove your opinion. 10. What is the one advantage that the Ocrassa has over Savannah? How does the Ocrassa use this against her and how does it affect Savannah? 11. How does the Ocrassa plot to kill Savannah? Who is affected by the plan? Does it work? 12. Why does the Ocrassa choose to invade Reece’s body? Why is this task more difficult than the Ocrassa thought it would be?
13. Explain the role nature plays in the book. What do leaves symbolize? 14. Discuss the ending of the book. What happens to the Ocrassa? What do you think will happen to Savannah, Nina, Reece, and his siblings?
Topics for Discussion: 1. What is unique about Reece’s physical appearance and how has it affected him throughout his life?
Savannah Grey Cliff McNish
2. Discuss the similarities between Reece and Savannah. How do these similarities help build their friendship?
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3. Describe Nina’s feelings about Savannah’s throat. How do they differ from those of Savannah or Reece? 4. Describe Savannah’s new powers. How well is she able to control them? Are some powers easier to control than others? How would you try to control these powers if you were in Savannah’s position?
Reading Level: Grade 7 Interest Level: Grades 7-12 www.carolrhodalab.com
About Carolrhoda Lab™ Carolrhoda Lab is dedicated to distinctive, provocative, boundary-pushing fiction for teens and their sympathizers. Carolrhoda Lab probes and examines the young-adult condition one novel at a time,
5. Why do you think Savannah has the powers and not Nina or someone else?
affording YA authors and readers an opportunity to explore and experiment with thoughts, ideas, and paradigms in the human condition. Adolescence is an experience we share and a condition from
6. Describe “the Horror.” Why do you think the author chose the name “the Horror” and what does it symbolize?
which some of us never quite recover. All of us at Carolrhoda Lab are proud to proclaim our lifelong adolescence and our commitment to publishing exceptional fiction about the teenage experience.