Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

The Live Forever Machine by Kenneth Oppel

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Kids Can Press, 1990

This was the first book I ever read twice: I was eleven and fascinated by the idea that a museum has twenty floors beneath the main floor that are jammed with treasures and artefacts – and this is merely Oppel’s scene-setting. Set during a smouldering summer in the city, the novel follows a boy’s life-changing friendship with a mysterious man in a local museum who claims to have burned the library at Alexandria. Though it is classified as YA, Oppel novel meditates on death, history and ethics in a way that is enriching for readers of any age.