Clair de Lune

Clair de Lune

5.0 2
by Cassandra Golds, Sophie Blackall
     
 

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Clair-de-Lune lives with her grandmother in the tippy-top of a peculiar old building. Every day she practices ballet, just like her mother before her—the famous ballerina who died when Clair-de-Lune was just a baby. Since that day, Clair-de-Lune hasn’t uttered a word.
Then one day the girl who cannot speak meets a remarkable mouse who can. Bonaventure…  See more details below

Overview

Clair-de-Lune lives with her grandmother in the tippy-top of a peculiar old building. Every day she practices ballet, just like her mother before her—the famous ballerina who died when Clair-de-Lune was just a baby. Since that day, Clair-de-Lune hasn’t uttered a word.
Then one day the girl who cannot speak meets a remarkable mouse who can. Bonaventure dreams of founding a dancing school just for mice—but he dreams of helping his new friend, too. Soon the brave little mouse introduces Clair-de-Lune to a hidden world inside, and yet somehow beyond, her building—a world that slowly begins to open her heart. Maybe one day her dreams will come true, too.


From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
This delicately blended tale exists on the borders of many worlds—ballet and everyday life, love and fear, and most of all, silence and sound. In fact, the "weight of things unsaid" drives the story of twelve-year-old Clair-de-Lune, who cannot speak. She is the daughter of a great ballerina who danced the most beautiful dance of her career and never rose from her final pas seul. Had she died trying to say something? With light touches Golds evokes both mystery and compassion, setting the stage for the girl who cannot speak to meet a mouse who can. The charming mouse characters are reminiscent of George Selden's whimsical animals. Where else would a brilliant deaf mouse live but in a church organ? How does a mouse choreographer address that troublesome matter of the tail? And what else could you possibly call a pair of mice who live in a print shop, but Leonard and Virginia? And yet we also find here a textured darkness reminiscent of DiCamillo's Despereaux, as well as of older narratives, such as the more tragic tales penned by Hans Christian Andersen. Clair-de-Lune takes place in a world both child-sized and emotionally large. The building in which the girl and her grandmother live has unsuspected dimensions. The mice in her world have unsuspected depths, and a monk, Brother Inchmahone, with unerring insights and his own secret sorrow, is a kindly yet unobtrusive ally. Golds has a gentle storytelling voice that nonetheless carries great conviction. She speaks directly to the child reader, striking a balance between surprise and prediction that allows for grief, yet leads to a satisfying ending. 2006, Knopf/Random House, and Ages 8 to 12.
—UmaKrishnaswami
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-Clair-de-Lune's mother died when she was a baby, and the girl has never been able to speak. She is treated meanly by the other students at her ballet school because of her talent and her inability to communicate. She lives with her grandmother who is determined that her granddaughter will never experience love because her mother died on stage from what the elderly woman believes was a broken heart. Surprisingly, Clair-de-Lune is now going to perform this same ballet in spite of misgivings by almost everyone, including the child herself. The young ballerina's only friend is a mouse named Bonaventure. He is definitely the warmest and most interesting character in the story. He has fallen in love with classical dance and is determined to create a mouse ballet. Before he can realize his dream, however, he is killed by a cat, and the other mice perform it in his honor. Through Bonaventure's friendship, Clair-de-Lune finds her father and her voice and perhaps a happy future. This is a curious, melancholy story with a young heroine who is malnourished both physically and spiritually. It is hard to determine the audience for this book. Although Bonaventure might add spark, it is not enough to attract many readers.-Carol Schene, formerly at Taunton Public Schools, MA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Goopily sentimental, drearily didactic, with not a single emotion un-telegraphed or story trope un-pilfered, this forced effort will appeal to only the most unsophisticated romantic. The 14-year-old of the title is a ballet dancer who lives in an odd building of many stories with her grandmother, also a dancer, and the memory of her mother, who died onstage dancing the dying swan. Clair-de-Lune does not speak, but she is devoted to dance while under the severe hand of her controlling grandmother. She meets a mouse named Bonaventure who can speak, however, and who is teaching dance to his fellow mice. Bonaventure reveals a hidden doorway in Clair-de-Lune's building that leads to a monastery, where a young monk, Brother Inchmahome, encourages her to think about why she cannot speak. There are dreams and portents; nasty girls who tease her; a magical bird with a red-gold heart who remains mysteriously just out of reach; death; redemption; and surprise revelations. Twaddle-and sloppy twaddle at that. (Fiction. 9-12)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307494504
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
01/16/2009
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
208
File size:
3 MB
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Cassandra Golds grew up in an old-fashioned apartment building almost as magical as Clair-de-Lune's.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Clair de Lune 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AMAZING!!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Well I thought this book had such feeling and excellent meaning, it relates to a feeling every teen has! Being stuck inside of a shell like no one understands you or did. Cassandra did a Perfect job and thank you so much for writing this! It made me think that ever in your mute you can still find that little voice and maybe evn find a Mouse freind. Well what i'm triing to say is THANK YOU SO MUCH CASSANDRA!!!