Tree By Leaf

Tree By Leaf

4.8 19
by Cynthia Voigt, Suzanne Duranceau
     
 

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It's not fair that Clothilde's father has returned from World War I so disfigured that he retreats to the boathouse as a recluse. It's not fair that her brother has abandoned the family to live with his rich grandfather in Boston. It's not fair that her mother has reverted to the role of a lady, leaving Clothilde to do all the housework. And it's certainly not fair… See more details below

Overview

It's not fair that Clothilde's father has returned from World War I so disfigured that he retreats to the boathouse as a recluse. It's not fair that her brother has abandoned the family to live with his rich grandfather in Boston. It's not fair that her mother has reverted to the role of a lady, leaving Clothilde to do all the housework. And it's certainly not fair that the Maine peninsula that Clothilde inherited from a great-aunt may have to be sold to support the family.

Then a mysterious Voice speaks to Clothilde, giving her the chance to change the life fate has dealt her and the people she loves. But Clothilde's wishes come true in unexpected, frightening ways -- and at a price she isn't sure she has the courage to pay.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
"Set on the New England coast in the summer of 1920, this beautifully written novel traces the course of a few eventful days in Clothilde Speer's life. The author has woven together her themes of love, war and loss, and it is miraculously convincing and moving," said PW. Ages 9-13. (May) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
Children's Literature - Children's Literature
In Cynthia Voight's novel, we meet Clothilde Speer. She is a thirteen-year-old who is living on the coast of Maine in the summer of 1920. Clothilde is learning the unfairness of life at a tender age. Her father has returned from World War I terribly disfigured, her wealthy grandfather refuses to help her family in any way and Clothilde's precious peninsula, that she inherited from her great-aunt, may have to be sold to support her family. Clothilde also hears a Voice. Depressed and bewildered at life, Clothilde hears this Voice at a time in her life when she is most vulnerable. Is it God she wonders? Is it the Voice of nature or is it her own imagination? The reader never finds out, but the Voice helps Clothilde arrive at the decisions she must make in her life. The Voice adds an element of fantasy to tie together Voight's themes of love, loss and war. 2000 (orig. 1988), Aladdin Paperbacks, Ages 12 up, $15.95 and $4.99. Reviewer: Sue Reichard—Children's Literature
School Library Journal
Gr 6-9 When 12-year-old Clothilde's father left to fight in World War I, her wealthy grandfather was so angered that he refused to support their family. With nowhere else to go, the family moved into an abandoned farmhouse on the rocky coast of Maine, which was left to Clothilde by an eccentric aunt. Now her father has come home from war, and Clothilde hopes that he will be able to solve their problems. Instead, he just adds to them. He is so scarred, both in body and soul, that he doesn't want them to see him and spends all his time alone in a small shack. Meanwhile, older brother Nathaniel is being seduced away by grandfather's wealth; their servant, Lou, is being beaten by her drunken, abusive father; and to raise enough money to survive, they may have to sell Clothilde's land. Unfortunately, the writing is not up to Voigt's usually high standard. Much as the characters are reserved with each other and hold themselves at a distance, so that readers are kept at a distance, even from Clothilde, the narrator. There is also a good deal of confusion caused by a mystical voice that speaks to Clothilde when she's in the forest. Is it God? Is it Mother Nature? Is it Clothilde's imagination? One never finds out, and it is a jarringly fantastical element in an otherwise bitterly real novel. Susan M. Harding, Mesquite Public Library, Tex.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781439106327
Publisher:
Aladdin
Publication date:
06/19/2008
Sold by:
SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
240
Sales rank:
652,996
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

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