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Monday, September 4, 2017

Book Review: Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk

Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk Book Review Middle Grade Historical Fiction

Beyond the Bright Sea

By Lauren Wolk

Historical Fiction

(Dutton Children’s Books, May 2017))

My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐/5


Thanks to @ for this review copy. All opinions are my own. 

Summary:
As a baby, Crow washed up in a skiff on the shore of a small island off of Cape Cod. A man called Osh found her and has raised her as his own. Miss Maggie also lives nearby and helps a great deal in Crow’s upbringing. The last twelve years have gone well; Osh painted portraits of whatever struck his fancy, Crow learned her sums, and together they checked lobster traps and farmed. Now, however, Crow’s world is too small. She wants to know where she came from. Penikese is a nearby island that was once a leper colony. Crow has a hunch that she came from that island, but she has no proof. Against Osh’s wishes, because he knows that the past is not always something to want and admire, Crow embarks on a journey to find her roots. In the course of the search, the islanders encounter a greedy treasure hunter who threatens to take more than jewels away from them. Several mysteries are introduced in this book, some are solved, and some are left alone, even at the end.

Review:
The staccato style of Crow’s speech seems to fit a child who has never left the islands. Her observations of life on the island make it seem so bucolic. She is wise beyond her years, perhaps because she is raised by two no-nonsense adults who have imparted that wisdom through everyday life. She is adopted, and it’s natural that adolescents want to know their history as they are finding out who they are.The story includes long lost family, treasure hunting, and a history lesson on the Elizabeth Islands.

The first third of this book moves very well. The middle has a lot of conflict and action, which requires that the ending take a long time to wrap up. Consequently, a young reader may need encouragement to reach the satisfying conclusion. Overall a rich and entertaining story.

Recommended





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