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Short chapters and beautiful writing engage the reader from the start in this unusual tale of friendship and hope
One of Our Books of the Year 2017 | Shortlisted for the 2018 Blue Peter Awards - Best Story | Shortlisted for the Costa Children's Book Award 2017 | Longlisted for the UKLA 2018 Book Award
Kiran Millwood Hargrave follows up her award-winning debut The Girl of Ink and Stars with a story set in the real world, though one still filled with a sense of wonder and the extraordinary. Set in the Philippines at the beginning of the last century it tells the story of a girl forcibly removed from her mother, as many were, because her mother has leprosy, or as those with the disease preferred, is touched. With the help of her friends Ami makes her way back to her mother and it’s a story of love, courage and hope, all of these symbolised by the butterflies that fill the pages and that are so important to the story. It’s passionately told, full of memorable scenes and characters, and the writing is beautiful.
The Costa Judges say: ‘Entirely original with not a word out of place – as vivid and beautiful as the butterflies themselves.’
A message from the author: ‘At a time when the world seems to be moving deeper towards intolerance, the message that we should be together but not the same, was at the forefront of my mind when writing this book. It’s easy to label people, and labelling means reducing them to one attribute, which in turn makes it easier to dismiss, dehumanise, and persecute. In The Island at the End of Everything, it is down to Ami, and her friend Mari, to find a way home in a society that tells them they are only children, only girls, and so are not in control of their own lives. But of course, this is far from the truth.’
Ami lives with her sick mother on an island where the sea is as blue as the sky. It’s all she knows and loves, but the arrival of a cruel government official, Mr Zamora, changes her world for ever. Her island is to become a colony for sufferers of leprosy. Banished to an orphanage across the water, Ami meets a honey-eyed girl named for butterflies, and together they set out to find a way back home to the island at the end of everything.
The Island at the End of Everything effortlessly weaves themes of prejudice, segregation and illness into the story of one very brave young girl’s determination to find her way back to her mother. A standalone story rooted in history – the story is set in 1902 on the real-life Filipino island of Culion, formerly an island for people with leprosy – this poignant tale firmly positions Kiran as one to watch in middle-grade fiction, and will stay with you long after reading.
In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can read their full reviews by clicking here.
|Publication date:||4th May 2017|
|Author:||Kiran Millwood Hargrave|
|Publisher:||Chicken House Ltd|
|Suitable for:||11+ readers, 13+ readers|
|Genres:||Adventure Stories, Family / Home Stories, Historical Fiction|
|Recommendations:||eBooks, Reviewed by Children|
|Other Categories:||Books of the Year, Blue Peter Book Awards, UKLA 2018|
Kiran Millwood Hargrave was born in London in 1990. She completed her undergraduate studies in English and Drama with Education at Cambridge University, also performing in Footlights smokers and plays. She graduated with distinction from the Creative Writing MSt at Oxford University, and was President of the Poetry Society there. She is an award-winning poet, with three collections published and work appearing in international journals such as Room, Agenda and Magma. She was a Barbican Young Poet, and has performed her work internationally, from Banff to Tokyo. Her first novel, The Girl of Ink & Stars, was published in 2016 to critical ...More About Kiran Millwood Hargrave