The Splintered Light

The Splintered Light

by Ginger Johnson

Hardcover

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Overview

Reminiscent of The Giver, this literary debut middle-grade fantasy is beautifully written and stunningly creative.

"
A deep dive into a world-within-a-world, a heart-within-a-heart." —Kathi Appelt, Newbery Honor winner and National Book Award finalist

“The joys of the senses and the glories of creation shine in this radiant debut.” —Julie Berry, Printz Honor author of The Passion of Dolssa

“Ginger Johnson's debut is as vibrant as the colors her characters wield in this novel about creativity, collaboration, and creation.” —Megan Frazer Blakemore, author of The Water Castle and The Firefly Code

Ever since his brother Luc's disappearance and his father's tragic death, Ishmael has lived a monotonous existence helping his mother on their meager farm where everything is colorless. Until one morning a ray of light fragments Ishmael's gray world into something extraordinary: a spectrum of color he never knew existed. Emboldened, Ishmael sets out to find answers hoping his long lost brother might hold the key.

He finds Luc in the Hall of Hue, one of the seven creative workshops at The Commons, the seat of all new creation. Luc is completing the final days of his training as a Color Keeper, adding the finishing touches of color to a brand new world designed and built by a team of young artisans. Although his heart calls him to a future as a Color Keeper, Ishmael feels too guilty to leave the duties of his old life behind. But when a catastrophe destroys nearly all of the color and light at the Hall of Hue, Ishmael and Luc are suddenly at severe odds. Torn between his family and his destiny, Ishmael must learn when to let go of the past, when to trust the path ahead, and when to believe in himself.

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews

2018-08-01

Ishmael lives on a dry, barren farm in a drab, gray world.

One day, a strange beam of brilliant light breaks through the monotony. Ishmael's never seen anything like it before—it seems to have a life of its own—and he can't find the words to describe it. "Light span? Ribbon of brightness? Shiny flash?" When the light separates into seven disparate bands, it comes to him: "splintered light." "It's only light," Mam says; she can't see its uniqueness. The only person who might understand Ishmael's curiosity and excitement is his older brother, Luc, who left home four years ago. Against Mam's wishes, the 11-year-old travels to the Commons, the seat of creation, where reality is shaped. Finding Luc, who is training to be a color keeper, Ishmael discovers that splintered light is the color spectrum and not everyone can see it. When Ishmael accidentally prevents Luc from carrying out his dream, he tries to make things right, but nothing goes as it should. Johnson takes a familiar coming-of-age arc and wraps it in a gorgeously built world that asks readers to plumb the nature of creation. The book is divided into five parts, each beginning with an epigraph from Gerard Manley Hopkins' ode to creation, "Pied Beauty," but, like the intricate worldbuilding, the words may need multiple reads for total comprehension. Racial differences are hinted at in descriptions of hair texture and physiognomy, but within this world's limited palette, the book adheres to the white default.

A beautiful world for patient readers to explore. (Fantasy. 8-13)

From the Publisher

A gorgeously built world that asks readers to plumb the nature of creation.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Johnson . . . builds a unique world, turning ordinary attributes into things of wonder.” —Booklist

“Ginger Johnson's debut novel is like a deep dive into a world-within-a-world, a heart-within-a-heart. Be prepared for revenge, jealousy and betrayal. But prepared also for beauty, light and joy.” —Kathi Appelt, Newbery Honor winner and National Book Award finalist

“I adored The Splintered Light! The joys of the senses and the glories of creation shine in this radiant debut.” —Julie Berry, Printz Honor author of THE PASSION OF DOLSSA

“Ginger Johnson's debut is as vibrant as the colors her characters wield in this novel about creativity, collaboration, and creation.” —Megan Frazer Blakemore, author of THE WATER CASTLE and THE FIREFLY CODE

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781681196237
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 09/04/2018
Pages: 416
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.60(d)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

Customer Reviews