Eleven-year-old Mercy lives with her eccentric foster aunts - two elderly sisters so poor they can afford only one lightbulb. A nasty housing developer is eyeing their house, which suddenly starts falling apart - just as Aunt Flora does, too. She's forgetting words, names and even how to behave in public. Mercy tries to keep her head down at school but when a classmate frames her for stealing the school's raffle money, Mercy's teachers decide to take a closer look at her home life. With the help of a neighbour, Mr Singh, who teaches Mercy about Gandhi and his principles of passive resistance, Mercy finds a tool that can help solve her problems. But first, like Gandhi, she needs to stand up for herself. She also needs a miracle. And to summon it she has to find her voice and tell the truth - and that truth is neither pure nor simple.
A book that already feels like a classic, Small Mercies holds a strong message for children today. Full of heart, it will shine among the best children's literature for years to come.