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Young Adult Fiction General


The Salt Trilogy, Volume Two

by (author) Maurice Gee

Orca Book Publishers
Initial publish date
Sep 2010
General, Dystopian, General
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2010
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2012
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Out of print

This edition is not currently available in bookstores. Check your local library or search for used copies at Abebooks.

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 13 to 18
  • Grade: 8 to 12
  • Reading age: 12 to 18


"The gool cannot be seen, not properly, but Xantee, Lo and their friends sense its evil presence. It lurks in the jungle in rock clefts, an enemy from outside nature. And now a fragment of gool grips Hari by the throat, draining the life from him. They can hold it back with the force of their minds, but for how long? Xantee, Lo and Duro set out on a perilous mission to find the Dog King Tarl, Hari's father, and the ruined city of Belong. Can he help them find the source of the gool? Will they find it in time? And do they have the strength to destroy the mother gool to rid the world of this life-sucking force?"

About the author

Maurice Gee is one of New Zealand's finest writers, with nearly fifty books for adults and young adults and a number of prestigious awards to his credit. A former teacher, Maurice was first inspired to write after reading Charles Dickens as a teenager. However, it was not until he reached his mid-40s that he became a full-time writer. Gee, who was named an Arts Foundation of New Zealand Icon Artist as one of the ten greatest living artists in New Zealand, came out of retirement to write the Salt Trilogy. He lives in Nelson, on New Zealand's South Island.

Maurice Gee's profile page


  • Commended, TriState YA Review Group Book of Note
  • Short-listed, New Zealand Post Book Award Young Adult Fiction nominee

Editorial Reviews

"Gee's quick, forceful prose makes this read almost as an extended poem of action and dialogue…[with] plenty of momentum. Salt and Gool make good choices for kids who want danger, adventure and a quick pace."

The Toronto Star

"With vivid yet spare prose, Gee has created a worthy installment to this planned trilogy…Very well executed."


"Gee's writing style and storytelling ability are really impressive...Each [volume] has a folktale quality that is timeless and would appeal to many audiences...There is something wildly wonderful about this series that lets it stand out from so many other currently available titles. When you read a book like Harry Potter it seems like every reader will see the same thing but when you read The Salt Trilogy what each reader sees is different; it's truly amazing."

Southwestern Ohio Young Adult Materials Review Group

"The unexpected twists of this original fantasy adventure keep the pages turning. The fascinating buildup leads to a thrilling climax…perhaps preparing readers for the next volume."

Kirkus Reviews

"While Gool is nominally the second book in the trilogy…it stands on its own nicely. Gee has done a terrific job of describing his world, giving life to his heroines and heroes while making their foes truly frightening. This is fine speculative fiction, accessible to readers of horror, fantasy, or science fiction and worth a look by anyone who enjoys adventure that doesn't trod the usual paths."

School Library Journal

"A well-written and interesting fantasy and adventure story for teens. While Gee tackles some complex themes and deeper issues in this trilogy, he does not let these get in the way of a fast-paced, gripping story…An essential purchase."

Resource Links

"The plot is tightly organized and has good dramatic tension as he children make their way to the city. The characters are interesting and believable. This is a good transitional book. Readers will look forward to the final installment."

Southwest Ohio and Neighboring Libraries (SWON)

"This sequel to the fantasy novel Salt is a biological and psychological horror story, and is even scarier than its predecessor...Gee's imagination is as fierce as ever."

The Sunday Herald

"In Gool, the looming apocalypse has taken an almost mythical form...Gee is a master storyteller."

New Zealand Herald

"Gee's quick, forceful prose retains all its drive in this installment, which reads almost as an extended poem of action and dialogue; the silent speech natural to the characters makes for a fast, back-and-forth bounce that further heightens momentum. Gee's imagery is pungent and vivid…[and] Gee's imagined land and the sturdy independence of his characters are fresh and engaging."

The Horn Book Magazine

"This book would be a fantastic addition to any high school or public library collection."

Tri State YA Book Review Committee

"Gee plays with the ideas of myth and truth…These are sophisticated and violent novels. The fact that they are thought-provoking and reflect some of the grittier truths about the nature of survival and society is a bonus. Gool will appeal to boys and girls alike…Recommended."

CM Magazine

Other titles by Maurice Gee