Title: Restoring Harmony
Author: Joëlle Anthony
Publisher: G. P. Putnam's Sons
Concepts: scarcity, poverty, wealth, incentives, markets, barter, trade, economic role of government
Review: When the world economy collapsed in 2031, people's well-being plummeted around the world as governments became paralyzed and stopped providing public services, organized crime ruled the markets, people deserted city centers for the suburbs, and food and fuel sources became increasingly scarce. Despite the difficult conditions everywhere, Molly McClure and her family had learned to support themselves over the years with subsistence farming and bartering with other residents of the small Canadian island where they lived.
Molly's life turned upside down when her parents sent her on what became a rather frightening trip to the United States to find her grandparents and bring them to Canada. She encountered one obstacle after the next, including painful hikes in her bare feet, hunger, no money for return tickets, dangerous members of the local crime organization, and the closing of the Canadian border following a polio outbreak. Would her beloved violin, a mysterious young man, and her inherent courage be enough to help overcome these problems and make it back home with her grandparents?
Restoring Harmony provides a richly satisfying blend of action, danger, romance, and family relations. Thoroughly intertwined in the fast-moving plot is a mystopian environment of economic chaos as people fend for themselves in their attempts to survive. In Molly McClure, the author has crafted a resourceful and clever heroine whose exploits will engage a wide readership.
Review by: Rutgers University Project on Economics and Children