Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grade 5n/a4.763219
“What is this place?” In a drought-stricken world, Devin and his grandfather have barely scraped out a living on their isolated farm. When his grandfather dies, Devin knows he can't manage alone and heads for the nearest city to find help. But in the city he finds only children alone like him, living on the streets. Then a small act of kindness earns Devin an invitation to the Gabriel H. Penn Home for Childhood-a place with unlimited food and toys and the hope of finding a new home. But Devin soon finds out that the Gabriel Penn Home is no paradise. A zombie-like sickness afflicts many of the children who live there-and it will claim Devin, too, unless he can become the first to find a way out of this dystopian nightmare. “[A] chilling and engrossing tale . . . A standout.” -Kirkus Reviews, starred review “Fast-paced and gripping. An original dystopian story.” -School Library Journal, starred review “A timeless story that deserves to become a children's classic for decades to come.” -The Christian Science MonitorA Summer 2014 Kids' Indie Next List Pick One of the Christian Science Monitor's 25 Best New Middle Grade Novels of 2014
Paperback, 320 pages
Published on May 12, 2015 by Algonquin Young Readers
ISBN-10: 1616204834
ISBN-13: 9781616204839
3 Book Reviews
  • diamond897
    diamond897Thursday, July 16, 2020 at 5:40 pm55 stars
    This book was so good. It was about a group of kids who were on the street who get brought to the home for childhood. The home is not a good place for kids. The people that run the place have the kids switch minds with old people. So the old peoples minds are inside the kids body and the kids mind in the old persons body. The kids become different the more times they do this. I felt really bad for all the kids. In the end they get away from the place and are safe and the home burns down.
    • mysteryturtle24
      mysteryturtle24Thursday, September 20, 2018 at 6:12 pm55 stars
      I picked up this book at my school library because I needed something for the coming week. It was a great mix of sci-fi, dystopian fiction, and a tad of horror. It follows Devin, a boy who must migrate to the city after his grandfather dies. The earth is much different, however. The rich have taken advantage of everyone else, and ruffian gangs fill the streets. He seems to be lucky when he is taken into the Gabriel B. Penn Home for Childhood, where there is lots of food to eat, toys to play with, and nice clothes to wear. But something seems off, and Devin starts to wonder who's childhood this home is for. A fast-paced thriller for middle-grade readers.
      • hummingbird1
        hummingbird1Sunday, November 5, 2017 at 1:19 pm55 starsFeatured
        Devin and his grandfather have lived on their farm all of Devin's life. He has never been to the city, and his grandpa is the only person he knows. So when his grandfather dies and he is left by himself, he decides that he has to go to town and get some help for the farm. When he is there, he meets a girl named Kit. Kit helps him in the city, and they become fast friends. After a couple of days in the city, he gets an invitation to come to a place that the children of the city dream about. This place has unlimited food and water, warm clothes, and everything a child could ever want. Devin and Kit decide to go to this place. But once there, Devin realizes that what they thought was this magical place is actually a nightmare. All the children who live there go to a room and get a shot that puts them in "The Dream." When you are in The Dream, you act zombie-like for a day or two until you are back to normal again. As you are in The Dream more and more, you act more and more zombie-like until it takes over their body forever. Can Devin find a way for everybody to escape this horrible place before it is too late? I really enjoyed reading The One Safe Place. Tania Unsworth did a great job of writing this story. Whenever Devin is happy, I'm happy. Whenever he's scared, I'm scared. This book really shows the importance of friendship and teamwork, and I really enjoyed reading it. I recommend this book to boys and girls ages 11+.