Sunday, 29 May 2011

Blog Tour: Life: An Exploded Diagram - Mal Peet

Life: An Exploded Diagram is the latest novel from multiple award-winning author Mal Peet, who won the Carnegie Medal for Tamar and the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize for Exposure.

The book is a coming-of-age love story, set in Norfolk in the 1960s against the backdrop of the Cuban Missile Crisis. It has already received great acclaim from Patrick Ness and Anthony McGowan, and Walker have created a book trailer which was revealed on 27th May on Wondrous Reads along with the first extract, but you can also watch the trailer here, below!

You can read the third extract here, and the fourth extract will be placed on Serendipity, tomorrow.

Check out the trailer below:


At three o’clock Clem straightened up and faked a groan.
“’S no good. I gotta find somewhere for a leak.”
Goz didn’t lift his head. “Don’t let me stand in your way.”
Clem hurried for the hedge, stepping over rows, then glanced back, turned right and walked casually up the field.
She was not among the throng at either of the weighingstations. A tractor was pulling a laden trailer out of the field. Was that her, riding on the back of it? No, just a boy in a blue shirt. Clem stood, indecisive and achingly disappointed. She’d gone. Like a drunk surfacing from a stupor,
he realized that he was being looked at and that he knew most of the faces around him. Half the Millfields estate was here today. God, what was he thinking of?
“Orright, young Clem? Lost someone, hev yer?”
That nosy cow Mrs Parsons from Chaucer.
“No, I… No. I was just…”
He retreated hastily.
Halfway back he looked over to where their camp was and saw – could it be? – a soft flash of blue. Just beyond the trees. Two brush-strokes of blue and one of black where the leaf-shadow edged into the green-gold haze of wheat. Yes. His breath failed, briefly. He made his legs move, made himself take care where he set his feet, crossing the rows. When he next looked up, the vision had gone. Dismay made him gasp and swear. And hurry. He stumbled up and through the gap between two of the ash trees. Their dense shade was like a moment of night, and his eyes were baffled for an instant. But then there she was, sitting crosslegged but leaning back on her hands on the narrow berm of dandelion-freckled and daisy-splashed grass beyond the tree-line. The straw hat was on the ground beside her left knee. Her head was lifted away from him and her eyes were closed. She was smiling. She seemed to be listening to the frantic debate being conducted by a parliament of greenfinches in the branches overhead.
He would remember all these things long after they’d been blown away. Scraps of talk, sound, would drift back like flakes of burnt paper on a spiralling wind.

“You took your time.”
“I thought you’d gone…”
The chirrupy hissing of grasshoppers.

“Yeah. A levels. Art, English, History…”
Her comical grimace. “Brainy with it, then?”
A noisy exodus of skirling birds.

“…I dunno. Art school, probably.”
“Dirty devil. So you can look at girls sitting there in the
nude? I don’t know how they can do it…”
A whisper through the grain.
“No, not that. I want…”

“Are you any good at kissing?”

An intense silence, everything stilled, at the moment she took hold of his collar and pulled his face down.
The panicky thrill throughout his body with her mouth on his. Not knowing what to do with his hands, so keeping them pressed into the grass. Something, an ant perhaps, crawling on the stretched skin between his thumb and forefinger. Awkward twisting of his shoulders. Tongue? Hers doing it. Slithering into his mouth. Hot breath tasting of cigarette and strawberry juice and something else. Coarse distant laughter like a pheasant’s call from somewhere. Squirming to keep the hard thing in his jeans from touching her leg. Wanting the aching moment to go on and on and
on because he had no idea what she might expect him to do next.

And then a snappy rasp from behind them: Goz, with his back against a tree, lighting a ciggie.
“Funny sort of a widdle, comrade,” he said.
Clem pulled away from her, gasping, lost.

So, what do you think, folks? Make sure you check out the next extract tomorrow over at the lovely Viv's blog, Serendipity.

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