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Friday, October 24, 2014

Gifts From the Sea by Natalie Kinsey-Warnock

Gifts from the SeaQuila is twelve years old. She has never been to the mainland even though the lighthouse is just five miles from Maine. She is feeling resentful that her father didn't get her mother to a doctor before it was too late. Quila also feels so much responsibility because she has to do all the chores that her mother had done before her death. If you think that it would be cool to live in a lighthouse, you might not know how much has to be done. You might not know how isolation affects you. Quila has no outlet for her grief or for expressing herself. Quila spots a mattress in the ocean (actually two). She hears a noise and realizes that it is a baby. If Quila thought she had been busy, she has more non-stop responsibility with the baby. Things change when a woman arrives at the lighthouse two years later. What does she want? Will she take the child from them?

This book is based on true events. Creativity is not a main strength of this historical fiction. I completely disagree with the suggested age level for this book. The Lexile score is 990 and the emotional component also affects the consideration for readers. Children ages nine through eleven will probably get the most out of this book. It turns out that the main theme is not lighthouses, but resilience and independence.

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