From the Publisher
"The emotional truths that Pullman reveals are so heartfelt and raw that they hardly read like fiction."(starred) Publishers Weekly.
"An intriguing mystery that keeps the reader guessing and turning the pages until the very end."Horn Book.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
PW commented that the author ``deftly interweaves strong themes'' in this ``moving'' tale of a half-black teenager growing up in rural north Wales. Ages 12-up. (Dec.)
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
An outsider in her Welsh village sixteen-year-old Ginny discovers that she has a white half-brother. She then sets out to learn the truth and begins to understand the vague memories of her childhood. This compelling story received a starred review in School Library Journal.
School Library Journal
Gr 7–10—Ginny has always believed that she and her father form a perfect family unit. Though she's curious about her Haitian mother, who passed away soon after Ginny was born, she's content to live an idyllic life with her father in their coastal Wales village. She works at two local restaurants and pursues her passion for drawing in her spare time. Then Ginny receives shocking news: she has a white half-brother, Robert, who is coming to live with them because his mother has died. Ginny and Robert hate each other on sight, but as family secrets start to emerge they begin working together to get the facts. Ginny learns that her father was never married to her mother, but was actually married to Robert's mother. Dim memories of a foster home coincide with the discovery that her father may have been in jail. Most unbelievable of all, Ginny's mother may be alive. Ginny's quest for her identity is inextricably linked to her ethnicity, her feelings of being an outsider in her community where she is one of only two people of color, and her love of art. Though Ginny is remarkably innocent for a 16-year old, overall Philip Pullman's novel (LaurelLeaf, pap. 1994) about family and identity stands the test of time. Mariam Margolyes masterfully voices both female and male characters, though some of the Welsh phrases may confuse listeners. This gentle, moving listen, with a pinch of voodoo, is a welcome change of pace from edgier selections.—Amy Pickett, Ridley High School, Folsom, PA