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Attack of the Black Rectangles

 Scholastic / September 2022

Award-winning author Amy Sarig King takes on censorship and intolerance in a novel she was born to write.


When Mac first opens his classroom copy of Jane Yolen's The Devil’s Arithmetic and finds some words blacked out, he thinks it must be a mistake. But then when he and his friends discover what the missing words are, he's outraged.

Someone in his school is trying to prevent kids from reading the full story.

But who?

Even though his unreliable dad tells him to not get so emotional about a book (or anything else), Mac has been raised by his mom and grandad to call out things that are wrong. He and his friends head to the principal's office to protest the censorship... but her response doesn't take them seriously.

So many adults want Mac to keep his words to himself.

Mac's about to see the power of letting them out.

In Attack of the Black Rectangles, acclaimed author Amy Sarig King shows all the ways truth can be hard... but still worth fighting for.

🪰 🦆 🕺🏼

⭐️ “Poignant, humorous, and bright . . . Whip-smart, tuned in to the mind of sixth-graders, and beautifully concluded, the novel takes a bold stand in a time of book bans and rampant censorship . . . Against the backdrop of family issues, first crushes, and the end of elementary school, this is a beacon of hope for middle grades and an object lesson in treating kids like the intelligent readers they are.”—Booklist, starred review


⭐️ “[Amy Sarig King’s] respect for young people is exemplary, and her characters indelible.”—Horn Book, starred review


⭐️ “Skillfully encourages keeping open minds and extending grace to the oblivious and hostile alike . . . A searingly relevant opus to intellectual freedom.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review


⭐️ “King’s latest novel is so timely and relevant, some readers may feel like the author has been privy to what’s going on in their own schools . . . A striking book on censorship; a must-have in all middle grade classrooms and school libraries.”—School Library Journal, starred review


“King empathetically tackles the intersections of multiple sensitive topics—mental health, patriarchy and sexism, war’s realities, whitewashed history—while educating readers on the power of protest and the benefits of living with grace.”—Publishers Weekly

 
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Amy Sarig King

(It's my Middle Grade codename!)

Why have two different names? 

I promise--it's not to confuse anyone. It just made sense that my books for older teens and adults be separate from books for younger readers, because I plan on writing for younger and younger readers as time goes on. 


Stay tuned as this area of my website grows. For now, click on the button below to find a comprehensive Reader Discussion Guide for both ME AND MARVIN GARDENS and THE YEAR WE FELL FROM SPACE. 

 

Free!

Attack Of the Black Rectangles 

Activity Packet 

Six easy-to-print activity worksheets to share with students who are reading Attack of the Black Rectangles, covering topics like:

  • Emotions

  • Honesty

  • Mindfulness

  • Letter Writing 

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Middle Grade Books

For ages 9-13+

A.S. King also writes middle grade fiction under the name Amy Sarig King. 
Here is where you find information on her middle grade books, educator guides,
and any helpful articles or interviews connected to books for younger readers.

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Attack of the Black Rectangles

September 6, 2022

When Mac first opens his classroom copy of Jane Yolen's The Devil’s Arithmetic and finds some words blacked out, he thinks it must be a mistake. But then when he and his friends discover what the missing words are, he's outraged.
Someone in his school is trying to prevent kids from reading the full story. But who?
Even though his unreliable dad tells him to not get so emotional about a book (or anything else), Mac has been raised by his mom and grandad to call out things that are wrong. He and his friends head to the principal's office to protest the censorship... but her response doesn't take them seriously.
So many adults want Mac to keep his words to himself. Mac's about to see the power of letting them out.
In Attack of the Black Rectangles, acclaimed author Amy Sarig King shows all the ways truth can be hard... but still worth fighting for.

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The Year We Fell From Space

October 15, 2019

Twelve year old Liberty Johnson’s parents are divorcing, and her father is in freefall—suffering from depression, refusing help. She’s worried she’s going to follow his same path and doesn’t know what the divorce means for her relationship with either of her parents. Her little sister won’t go outside. The other kids in middle school are obsessed with fake-weddings and boyfriends, but Liberty Johansen is going to change the way we look at the night sky. Most people see the old constellations, the things they've been told to see. But Liberty sees new patterns, pictures, and possibilities. With everything that’s happening, Liberty feels like her whole world is falling from space. Can she map a new life for herself and her family before they spin too far out of reach?

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Me and Marvin Gardens

2017

Obe Devlin has problems. His family's farmland has been taken over by developers to be turned into subdivisions. His best friend Tommy has abandoned him and he keeps getting nosebleeds. As he cleans up trash at the nearby creek, he discovers a strange creature who eats plastic and poops toxic waste. The animal--Marvin Gardens--becomes Obe's best friend and biggest secret. But to keep him safe from the developers and Tommy and his friends, Obe must make a decision that might change everything.