Adam and the Witch Queen
Carolyn Johnson, author
Ever since his father went missing two years ago, Adam can't seem to concentrate in school. One day, he’s suspended for starting a fire with a paper plane. Next, his mother tasks him with doing the yard work. But then he discovers a trap door in the shed floor he's never seen before. It leads to a city with dusty skies where people wear gas masks. When he's seen without one, he's pursued by guards. Before they catch him, a beautiful woman and an old man rescue him. They're leaders of a group who want to overthrow the Witch Queen. She’s destroyed the economy, separated families, and prolonged her life unnaturally by drinking children's blood. Adam asks them for help to get home, but they're right in the middle of a plot to get their friends out of prison. If Adam wants help, he's going to have to lend a hand first. But, no thanks to Adam, the escape doesn't go smoothly. To make amends, Adam agrees to get involved in the next night's attempt. He makes contact with Jaydu, the rebel group's strongest member, but Jaydu won't leave without his cell-mate Max. Max is drugged, weak and dishevelled, but Adam recognizes him as his father. On their way out, Adam and Max are recaptured and sent back to the same cell. After Adam endures several “interviews” with the cruel warden, the Witch Queen arrives. Adam must resist her manipulations to save his own skin and his father's. Then, the rebels break into the palace. Adam and Max are saved and the Witch Queen defeated, but only at the cost of the old man's life. Now Jaydu and the others are able to restore justice and freedom to the city. And Adam and his father can finally go home.