Collins, S. (2004). Gregor the Overlander. NY: Scholastic.
When eleven-year-old Gregor follows his two-year-old sister, Boots, through a grate in their New York City apartment building’s laundry room, they discover an amazing Underland world filled with giant talking cockroaches, bats, spiders, and rats. In this Underland lies the kingdom of Regalia, inhabited by pale-skinned, violet-eyed humans called Underlanders. Gregor’s appearance sparks a war between the Underlanders and the rats, and he finds himself the reluctant subject of a strange prophecy that foretells that Gregor has a role to play in the Underland’s uncertain future. He embarks on a dangerous adventure that will change both him and the Underland forever.
Evaluative Criteria for Fantasy:
Overland is the setting at the beginning the book with Gregor and his family at his house in New York. Most of the book takes place in the city of Regalia or other parts of the Underland. The descriptions of Regalia and the Underland city are so extensively vivid and distinct that readers are meant to visualize those settings.
Gregor the Overlander covers political themes, but is still exciting and thrilling enough to engage young readers. The book addresses , such as war, genocide, prejudice, broken families, and the nature of trust and friendship.