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|Color of the sun|
Author: Almond, David
When a boy is assumed to have been killed, Davie thinks he might know who is responsible. He turns away from the gossip and excitement to the sunlit summit at the top of the town where what's real and imaginary begin to blur, but also where he begins to realize that amid immorality, there can be kindness, and in darkness, there is a chance for hope.
Kirkus Reviews (07/15/19)
School Library Journal (09/01/19)
The Hornbook (00/11/19)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 08/01/2019 Three weeks following his father’s death, Davie goes for a long walk through his North England town. It’s a hot summer morning, and as the day stretches on, the temperatures rise along with a certain uneasiness. Davie’s meandering path to the top of a hill is interrupted by various townsfolk, each one brought to vivid life by a few simple descriptions from Almond, and there’s a certain, ever-present oddness, a subtle discomfort that is bolstered by the news that a boy has just been murdered and his killer is abroad—it could be anyone. This is a quiet, contemplative book, though, and as Davie wanders on, so does his mind, ruminating on death even as the world around him hums with life. Almond manages to craft deeply real stories touched by magic that itself feels true, being so well rooted in character and emotion—in this case, Davie’s grief. Thematic and lyrical, colored by Newcastle slang and the English countryside, this is one for the deep thinkers and those who are dealing with grief. - Copyright 2019 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 09/01/2019 Gr 9 Up—In spite of, or perhaps because of, his father's death just three weeks prior, Davie's mother sends him out of the house on an "ordinary" summer day. She's baked some "bara brith"—bread sweetened with dried fruit—to take along; she's firm but kind. Award-winning English novelist Almond directs his protagonist with a similar sureness: the plot, a road trip of sorts, allows other characters Davie meets along the way to supply the drama as he sets off on foot for a sunny hill outside of town. First Davie's mate Gosh Todd shows him the body of a kid their age he claims has been murdered, casting a long shadow on Davie's outing. Then he meets two women he's known all his life who speak to the "vulnerability of all babes" as they retell the folktale of a child stolen out of its pram by a buzzard, perhaps never to return. This only makes Davie curious about what "the warm breeze at his back" would feel like were he to be abducted, because maybe he would like to be lost, too. As Davie's many surprising encounters—a local priest who reveals he's in love, a "bonny" lass crushing on shy Davie, an ugly stray dog who keeps him on track—start to dislodge Davie's isolation, readers too are touched by this small-town, gossipy community who nonetheless care about an adolescent boy coming to terms with grief. VERDICT In this piece of masterful storytelling, a small town offers its own brand of solace to a young teen struggling with loss. Recommended.—Georgia Christgau, Middle College High School, Long Island City, NY - Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.