In a future land of tyranny and manipulation–and grim bathroom humor–twelve-year-old Dogny suddenly finds herself thrust into the ancient combat of the nation’s Younger Games. The youngest member of each family, or a designate, is pitted against others and forced to make her or his way through innumerable pitiless childish amusements. Only one may emerge victorious. Using her training, as well as her marbles, Dogny contends with deadly human-animal-vegetable hybrids, the mysterious and shrewish Cougar Woman, and the most vicious enemy of all: screaming toddlers. If she survives, will Dogny choose to skip to the finish, so she can go home to her family? Or will her blossoming affection for another unwilling young combatant, handsome would-be suitor Petter, prevent Dogny from being the victor of the Younger Games?