Mercury

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers (April 6 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416935886
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416935889

Summary:

North Carolina’s Eisner Award–winning Hope Larson is back with another wonderful graphic novel, this one set in rural Nova Scotia and inspired by the years Larson lived in that province. Split between two time periods – 1859 and the present – the novel follows two young women, both battling the scourges of adolescence: young love, demanding parents, and gossipy friends. A mysterious necklace ties their stories together across the years, as does the promise of hidden treasure in and among the forests of French Hill.

In the present, Tara is struggling to re-define her world after a fire has forced her family apart: her single mother has moved to Alberta to earn a living, while Tara remains in French Hill with her aunt, uncle, and cousin. She does her best to fit in at her new high school and to resist the urge to take long runs into the forest to visit the site of her burned home. In 1859, Josey lives a sheltered existence on her family farm with her parents and brother, dutifully performing her chores and hoping for adventure, which eventually arrives in the form of charismatic yet mysterious Asa, a god-fearing stranger who convinces her father their land is rich with gold and offers to help mine it.

Review:

“The beautifully rendered black-and-white drawings capture the gorgeous, magical, and mundane details of both time periods. The tales are by turns mystical, funny, suspenseful, and tender. Graphic novels make great fodder for voracious readers and offer encouragement to reluctant ones, and it is supremely satisfying to see yet another excellent girl-focused offering from Larson.” —Quill & Quire, STARRED REVIEW

“Lost treasure, mother love and misbegotten romance form the bases of this richly rewarding intergenerational graphic novel. . . . Larson skillfully maintains suspense . . . Classic themes of love, family, betrayal and renewal combine to create multilayered historical fiction that perfectly illustrates how the past continues to influence the present.”
— Kirkus, STARRED REVIEW

 

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