Milena, Bartolomeo, Helen, and Milos have left their prison-like boarding schools far behind, but their futures remain in peril. Fleeing across icy mountains from a terrifying pack of dog-men sent to hunt them down, they are determined to take up the fight against the despotic government that murdered their parents years before. Only three will make it safely to the secret headquarters of the resistance movement. The fourth is captured and forced to participate in a barbaric game for the amusement of the masses — further proof of the government’s horrible brutality.
Jean-Claude Mourlevat was born in Ambert, France, in 1952 and started his literary career in the theater. Today, he is considered on of the major authors of children's fiction in France, where many of his stories have become classics. He has been awarded many literary prizes in France for his children's fiction. Winter's End is his first novel for young adults.
One theme in this book is don't let society choose what the outcome of your life will be. Instead, free yourself from their cages and live your life how you want to. An example of this would be the fact that all these children are being held at this prison-like school and not even one of the teachers will give them a hint as to what's happening in their life's. Also, the students get a pass to only be able to see their counselors twice a year. If one student decides she needs to see their counselor then another student has to go with them. They are timed while they are gone, and if they go over that time a different student be placed into a place called the sky. Which is basically a dark cell where they don't get food or water. In the beginning of this book these girls are letting society choose the outcome of their life's.
The second theme in this book is that whatever you do, know that there will be consequences. When Milena and Helen are going to see Helen's counselor, they meet two boys from the boys school near the girls school and decide to keep in touch. Milena and Bartolomeo decide to run away from their schools it made a huge impact on everyone. One girl had been placed into the terrifying place they call Sky, and soon gets extremely sick. The two are chased by dog-men and other dangerous men who just want to kill them now. Helen and Milos decide to go after their friends and they too get into some trouble. This shows that whatever you decide to do, if you are hesitant at all, there will be consequences to face.
The last theme in this book is that there will always be someone there for you whenever you need them. Helen and Milena had always been very good friends, just as Milos and Bartolomeo are. After Milena and Bartolomeo had ran away, Helen knew that they would get into deep trouble and decided that she couldn't let them go through all that alone. She wanted to find them and help them, and Milos decided that he too would try and locate his friends. Helen and Milos traveled everywhere that they knew the other two had been, talking to people and trying to find out where they had gone. In the end, Milos gets captured and has to fight to get free. This all shows that there will always be someone out there to help you. These four teenagers went to great lengths to help one another, and they try to get to the bottom of whatever happened to their parents and if indeed, they were murdered by a corrupt government.
REVIEWS: http://savvyverseandwit.com/2013/05/winters-end-by-jean-claude-mourlevat-translated-by-anthea-bell.html http://articles.latimes.com/2009/nov/20/entertainment/la-et-book20-2009nov20