Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk Download (read online) free eBook .pdf.epub.kindle

Beyond the Bright Sea

From the author of the critically acclaimed Wolf Hollow comes a moving story of identity and belonging.

Twelve-year-old Crow has lived her entire life on a tiny, isolated piece of the starkly beautiful Elizabeth Islands in Massachusetts. Abandoned and set adrift on a small boat when she was just hours old, Crow’s only companions are Osh, the man who rescued and raised her,

Twelve-year-old Crow has lived her entire life on a tiny, isolated piece of the starkly beautiful Elizabeth Islands in Massachusetts. Abandoned and set adrift on a small boat when she was just hours old, Crow’s only companions are Osh, the man who rescued and raised her, and Miss Maggie, their fierce and affectionate neighbor across the sandbar.

Crow has always been curious about the world around her, but it isn’t until the night a mysterious fire appears across the water that the unspoken question of her own history forms in her heart. Soon, an unstoppable chain of events is triggered, leading Crow down a path of discovery and danger.

Vivid and heart wrenching, Lauren Wolk’s Beyond the Bright Sea is a gorgeously crafted and tensely paced tale that explores questions of identity, belonging, and the true meaning of family.
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    Lola  Reviewer

    3.5 stars.

    I wish this read a bit more like a castaway story, because then it would have been a little more exciting, in my opinion, since ‘‘survival’’ would have been a huge theme.

    Although Crow was cast away on an island when she was a baby, a man (Osh) found her and took care of her, becoming her father. She never did have to fend for herself, even having Miss Maggie, their sandbar neighbour, help her when needed.

    But still, Crow doesn’t feel whole. She wants to know where she comes from badly

    I wish this read a bit more like a castaway story, because then it would have been a little more exciting, in my opinion, since ‘‘survival’’ would have been a huge theme.

    Although Crow was cast away on an island when she was a baby, a man (Osh) found her and took care of her, becoming her father. She never did have to fend for herself, even having Miss Maggie, their sandbar neighbour, help her when needed.

    But still, Crow doesn’t feel whole. She wants to know where she comes from badly. So she digs around, discovering she might be from Penikese, the worst possible place she could be from.

    Though I thought so in the beginning, there is no mystery case. It’s less about finding out the truth about Crow’s past and more about her realizing the future is much more important than the past.

    So the mystery lasted while it lasted and that was that. I have to admit I found learning the truth too soon underwhelming.

    Fortunately, the characters are precious. It doesn’t take long for the reader to familiarize themselves with them. Even if we don’t exactly know much about their past, we instantly connect with their kind-heartedness, values and sense of community.

    I definitely find the message in this book important: family isn’t about the blood; it’s about the people who care for you no matter what. I think it’s normal to want to find our relatives and learn more about ourselves in the process, but it’s important not to forget who was there for us when our blood family wasn’t.

    A tiny bit uneventful and repetitive, but wonderfully-moving. I’d love to read a sequel of it with an adult Crow.

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    Wendy Darling

    3.5 stars A baby is set adrift in the Elizabeth Islands in the 1920s. Why? The answer is revealed slowly, and Crow isn’t sure what her adoptive father knows about it. (view spoiler)

    Luminous prose, quietly endearing characters, and sobering history. I loved so much of this beautiful middle grade book, and yet I’m mixed about one major subplot, much as I was with FOX HOLLOW. I think the story is engrossing enough–and frankly, mo

    Luminous prose, quietly endearing characters, and sobering history. I loved so much of this beautiful middle grade book, and yet I’m mixed about one major subplot, much as I was with FOX HOLLOW. I think the story is engrossing enough–and frankly, more powerful without it. But it says something about the beguiling nature of the author’s writing that I only needed to see her name to know that I wanted to read this. Jorjeana Marie’s narration is just perfect for this story, too.

    Review of come of the audio edition.
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    Julie

    For the majority of my life, I never paid much attention to the word real.

    I knew of The Velveteen Rabbit’s famous line: What is real?

    And I’ve known women throughout my life who have had nose jobs or breast implants and have been offended by people asking them if their alterations were “real.”

    Prior to nine years ago, I had no attachment to the word real, nor was it a button pusher to me. But, nine years ago, we came home with a new baby daughter from China, and though we received hugs and smiles

    I knew of The Velveteen Rabbit’s famous line: What is real?

    And I’ve known women throughout my life who have had nose jobs or breast implants and have been offended by people asking them if their alterations were “real.”

    Prior to nine years ago, I had no attachment to the word real, nor was it a button pusher to me. But, nine years ago, we came home with a new baby daughter from China, and though we received hugs and smiles and many well-wishes, it wasn’t long before strangers would come up to us, wherever we were, and ask me, in front of my new daughter, “Will she ever know her real mother?”

    My son, who was 12 at the time, started reporting back to me that whenever he told people he had a new sister, they would correct him by saying, “Well, you mean an adopted sister. She’s not your real sister, right?”

    And, then, four years ago when we brought home another beautiful daughter, people would stop our girls out in public places and ask, “Is she your real sister?”

    My family really started struggling with this. Were we not real? Were we surreal? Were we fake? Impostors?

    What people mean, when they ask these questions, is . . . biological or birth or blood, but they rarely say that.

    And, because I’m a little bit snarky, when they ask, “Will your girls ever know their real mother?” I sometimes answer, “Oh, yeah, and today they’re thinking I’m a real bitch.”

    And when they ask, “Are your girls real sisters? I typically answer, “Oh, they’re really sisters, and they hate each other, but I think you’re asking if they’re biologically related?”

    And once, just once, when a nasty woman at Costco looked down at my daughter and then said to me, “But, she’s not your real daughter, is she?” I looked up at the woman’s hair and asked, “Is that your real hair color?”

    So, I struggle through this issue every day, and let me tell you, it’s a real thing, but I had never encountered this being addressed in a book before.

    And, here it is, the issue of real playing out in a book (hey, this is about a book after all!).

    In Beyond the Bright Sea, a newborn baby washes upon the shore on the Elizabeth Islands and is taken in by a single man who goes by the name of Daniel. Daniel, without hesitating, takes in the baby and raises her. He names the girl Crow and she calls him Osh, and the reader is introduced to them as Crow is 12 and is wondering about her place in the world.

    As a preteen Crow has become almost obsessively focused on her identity and her father is a man of few words. He’s a loving man, but his silence provokes her to investigate her background on her own, and before long, she has information about her biological family. When she announces to Osh, “I think I know who my real parents are,” he becomes agitated and feels threatened and she doesn’t understand his reaction to her words.

    Osh is not terribly communicative, and he’s inept at saying what he wants to say, which is. . . I am your real father.

    But, despite his discomfort, he allows Crow to pursue her roots and draw her own conclusions, and, ultimately, this journey brings father and daughter closer together.

    Crow unexpectedly learns through this process “that there are better bonds than blood.”

    The author writes, in her Note at the end, “Writing this book reminded me that happiness is a matter of being where—and who—we want to be.”

    And, I’d like to tell her. . . that reading this book and my own life experiences have brought me to the same conclusion.

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