Anderson’s The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing takes place during a time when slavery was considered normal. As Anderson presents the life of Octavian and his mother, both considered royalty in their original homes, a daily life of sorts is glimpsed. While the harsh realities of slavery are present, the book takes a more democratic view instead of choosing to pull on the reader’s emotional heart strings. Overall, Anderson has written an accomplished book which has won recognition as a 2006 National Book Award and a 2006 Printz Honor Award.