Best 2001 Adventures (7)
December 14, 2020
One in a series of 10 posts identifying Josh Glenn’s favorite 2001 adventure novels.
Malorie Blackman’s YA sci-fi adventure Noughts and Crosses (in the US: Black & White).
In Albion, a near-future, alternate-reality England, although Africans long ago colonized Europe and enslaved white-skinned people, today slavery has been abolished. However, the so-called “crosses” (Brits of African descent) oppress the “noughts” (native Britons) and maintain their own privileged status through political, economic, and cultural means. Persephone “Sephy” Hadley, daughter of a powerful cross politician, grows up with Callum McGregor, the son of her nanny and one of the few noughts to attend her elite school. Although the two are close friends, they drift apart after Callum is forced to leave school… until Callum, who has since drifted into the orbit of a violent paramilitary group seeking to overthrow institutionalized racism, helps them kidnap Sephy. (Considered one of the most influential recent books in British literature, Noughts and Crosses alternated between Sephy’s and Callum’s perspectives.) When Sephy learns that she’s pregnant, she faces an impossible choice.
Fun facts: First installment in a series that also includes An Eye for an Eye (2003), Knife Edge (2004), Checkmate (2005), Double Cross (2008) and Crossfire (2019). The first season of the British TV adaptation, Noughts + Crosses, aired in March 2020.
JOSH GLENN’S *BEST ADVENTURES* LISTS: BEST 250 ADVENTURES OF THE 20TH CENTURY | 100 BEST OUGHTS ADVENTURES | 100 BEST RADIUM AGE (PROTO-)SCI-FI ADVENTURES | 100 BEST TEENS ADVENTURES | 100 BEST TWENTIES ADVENTURES | 100 BEST THIRTIES ADVENTURES | 75 BEST GOLDEN AGE SCI-FI ADVENTURES | 100 BEST FORTIES ADVENTURES | 100 BEST FIFTIES ADVENTURES | 100 BEST SIXTIES ADVENTURES | 75 BEST NEW WAVE SCI FI ADVENTURES | 100 BEST SEVENTIES ADVENTURES | 100 BEST EIGHTIES ADVENTURES | 75 BEST DIAMOND AGE SCI-FI ADVENTURES | 100 BEST NINETIES ADVENTURES | NOTES ON 21st-CENTURY ADVENTURES.