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|My brother's shadow|
Author: Avery, Tom
Eleven-year-old Kaia, who has felt emotionally isolated since her brother's suicide, befriends a wild boy who mysteriously appears at her London school, finding a way to communicate with him despite his being mute.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG+
Reading Level: 4.20
Points: 3.0 Quiz: 172948
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 6-8
Reading Level: 4.30
Points: 7.0 Quiz: 64998
Kirkus Reviews (07/15/14)
School Library Journal (06/01/14)
The Hornbook (00/09/14)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 06/01/2014 Gr 6–9—Kaia is frozen. She has been this way since she found her older brother Moses dead in his bedroom. Her former friends think she's a "freak," her teachers think she's not applying herself, and her mother is frozen herself, stuck in a vicious cycle of despair. Then one day, a wild, silent boy appears at Kaia's school, and she finds someone to whom she can finally relate and open up. This poignant tale of loss and the attempts at closure is poetically recorded, each chapter revealing a bit of the strife that Kaia battles as she struggles to exist in school, to hold on to herself, and to find her way back to the girl she was before her horrendous tragedy. The novel is peppered with Kaia's "Rules for Life," little mantras that slowly evolve and help her to heal as she grows and learns to cope. As the layers of ice she has encased herself in begin to crack, the remarkable girl slowly begins to blossom and she is able to find hope. Avery creates an impressive account of tragedy, and his gentle, melancholic prose establishes the perfect tone for his tale of despair and renewal. Fans of realistic fiction, especially dealing with emotionally jarring, disturbing events, will surely devour Avery's latest.—Ellen Norton, White Oak Library District, Crest Hill, IL - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 09/01/2014 Ever since Kaia found her older brother dead at home, she has been “frozen.” So has her mother, though she’s since found comfort in a bottle. Kaia lost everything—her brother and mother (who she adored), her friends (who now think she’s a freak), her teachers (who think she’s not trying), and her smile (which her mother used to say was lovely). One day, a wild, gray-eyed, raggedy-clothed boy appears at school. He howls, growls, and leaps around the room, but he never speaks. Kaia is drawn to him, and she is the only person who wonders about his origins. It is with this boy that Kaia feels comfortable enough to open up, thus beginning to work through her deep grief and crack the “ice” that constricts her. Closure for Kaia remains difficult but perhaps now not insurmountable. Uncomplicated yet potent storytelling renders this an acutely heart-wrenching tale of despondency and renewal in a fresh manner. Readers who love stories of overcoming personal struggles and emotional strife will eat this up. - Copyright 2014 Booklist.