Hamline News

New Book from Laurel Snyder

Laurel Snyder Orphan Island 375

Orphan Island, by Laurel Snyder

Published by Walden Pond Press
Publication Date: May 30, 2017
Middle Grade Novel, 288 pages
Buy the Book: Harper Collins
Laurel's website
  

About the Book

For readers who loved Sara Pennypacker's Pax and Lois Lowry's The Giver comes a deep, compelling, heartbreaking, and completely one-of-a-kind novel about nine children who live on a mysterious island.

On the island, everything is perfect. The sun rises in a sky filled with dancing shapes; the wind, water, and trees shelter and protect those who live there; when the nine children go to sleep in their cabins, it is with full stomachs and joy in their hearts. And only one thing ever changes: on that day, each year, when a boat appears from the mist upon the ocean carrying one young child to join them—and taking the eldest one away, never to be seen again.

Today’s Changing is no different. The boat arrives, taking away Jinny’s best friend, Deen, replacing him with a new little girl named Ess, and leaving Jinny as the new Elder. Jinny knows her responsibility now—to teach Ess everything she needs to know about the island, to keep things as they’ve always been. But will she be ready for the inevitable day when the boat will come back—and take her away forever from the only home she’s known?

Praise


“Through the precocious Jinny, Snyder delivers a contemplative commentary on the transition from childhood to adolescence, and from ignorance to awareness.” — 
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

This charming, engrossing tale set in a vividly realized world is expertly paced and will appeal to fans of wilderness adventure stories and character-driven relationship novels alike.   KIRKUS Reviews

“Laurel Snyder has written a story that curls around the heart and pulls in tight—a meditation on the power and wisdom and closeness and sorrow of childhood. A wondrous book, wise and wild and deeply true. I loved every second of it.” — Kelly Barnhill, Newbery Medal-winning author of The Girl Who Drank the Moon

“An elegant and thoughtful meditation on the joys and sorrows of growing up, with lyrical prose, characters that feel as alive as your dearest friends, and a vivid setting sure to enchant young readers. A work of extraordinary heart.” — Claire Legrand, author of Some Kind of Happiness

“A visionary, poignant, astonishingly lovely fable of childhood and change. This is a book to lose yourself in, and to never forget.” — Anne Ursu, author of The Real Boy

“Orphan Island is a masterpiece—both timeless and immediate. Snyder’s book, like the island within it, contains all of the joys, wonders, and terrors of childhood. Every young reader needs this book; every grown reader needs it even more.” — Jonathan Auxier, New York Times bestselling author of The Night Gardener