by Margaret Mahy (Viking, 1992); audiobook read by Richard Mitchley (Brilliance, 2017)

Book cover: “Underrunners” by Margaret Mahy

Set in rural New Zealand, a down-to-earth middle-grade exploration of hope, disappointment and making the most of things; of using imagination as a coping mechanism yet still facing up to reality. Mahy plumps for realism and character development over clichéd happy endings.

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