Where the World Ends

Where the World Ends

by Geraldine McCaughrean


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Winner of the 2018 Carnegie Medal! New from Michael L. Printz Award winner Geraldine McCaughrean comes an extraordinary story of eight boys stranded on a rock in the middle of the sea, left to fight for their survival.

Every time a lad went fowling on the stacs, he came home less of a boy and more of a man. If he went home at all, that is.

Every summer Quill and his friends are put ashore on a remote sea stac to hunt birds. But this summer, no one arrives to take them home. Surely nothing but the end of the world can explain why they’ve been abandoned—cold, starving and clinging to life, in the grip of a murderous ocean. How will they survive such a forsaken place of stone and sea?

This is an extraordinary story of fortitude, endurance, tragedy and survival, set against an unforgettable backdrop of savage beauty.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250225498
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Publication date: 12/03/2019
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 57,631
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Geraldine McCaughrean is the author of the Printz Award winner The White Darkness, the New York Times bestseller Peter Pan in Scarlet, and many other books for children and young adults. She is a two-time winner of the Carnegie Medal, once for Where the World Ends. Geraldine lives in Berkshire with her husband John and the lingering shades of all those characters she has invented in her books. Her cottage is under year-round siege from wild birds demanding to be fed. The ducks even knock on the door.

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Where the World Ends 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
paigereadsthepage 5 months ago
This book is true to the blurb. Set in 1727, a group of boys from Hirta go hunting on a sea stac in St. Kilda. No one comes to pick them up as they normally do and they become stranded for many months. Most of the time, the story dragged. It's mostly about their day-to-day mundane happenings and a lot of birds. Here and there something of interest happens though. For the most part though, I felt bored and disengaged. Though the dark atmosphere and setting were painted remarkably, the story itself was tedious. There were 2-3 points where I was wanting to know what was going to happen, but they were short-lived moments. I think middle grade students would find this uninteresting and I think they would also get confused. This is quite possible true for upper grade levels as well. It says this is for ages 10 & up. I do not agree that this is on a 10 year old reading level. This should say 13-14 year old & up because of the vernacular and literary skills necessary. The novel is very loosely based on a true story. Revealed in the end by the author, the only true part of the story is that in the 1700's a group of young men did get stranded for 9 months and survive. That is literally all that is known. No other details survive about the true account as to how they survived, etc. The premise for this book, because of the true story, is interesting. But this novel, which details their time being stranded the sea stac, left me feeling bored except for a a few parts. It was okay. I didn't like the story, but I didn't hate it. I disliked it more than I liked it though because I was bored. I received an advanced copy from Netgalley. Opinions are my own.
Nursebookie 4 months ago
"Every time a lad came fowling on the St Kilda stacs, he went home less of a boy and more of a man. If he went home at all, that is…” In the summer of 1727, a group of men and boys were sent to a sea stac (only a few miles away from the shore - unbeknownst to any of them) to harvest birds for food – they are expected to stay there for about 1 week upwards to three weeks, but no one ever returns to collect them. Why? The men and the boys start speculating on the reasons why they were left there for months. Abandoned, they had to endure storms, starvation and terror. Geraldine McCaughrean writes a triumphant story on the strength of human resolve, faith and strength in a time of survival and endurance of not just the body, but also the mind. For such a simple story, McCaughrean was able to write on the vulnerability of humans in the face of isolation and suffering. McCaughrean was able to create an atmosphere that is dark and chilly. The book’s story was loosely based on true events that showed how people can survive and be changed through the harshness and bitterness of having to survive on a mass of rock in the middle of the sea. What a beautiful and poignant story that I highly recommend. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Excellent Book!!
Anonymous 4 months ago
This book was difficult for me to read, The writing made it hard to follow at times, but the writer was trying to write from the characters point of view, which they did well, just harder for me to get into. The concept of the book was fascinating, the visualization of the landscape and the birds was well done. I enjoyed the overall story. There were parts that dragged on for me and was a little to involved with the religious talk from the characters. I liked how the author was creative with the story in a way that it was loosely based on actual events, but was able to use their own imagination to what the boys had gone through while stranded on the stacs. Thank you Netgalley for the chance to read this ARC!
onemused 4 months ago
WHERE THE WORLD ENDS is an intriguing historical fiction, based on a true story. The boys of Hirta are sent to a rocky island to hunt the birds that gather there and bring back the food to the people to help with their survival. During that time, they are isolated and have no way of reaching their families or loved ones. This year, the task becomes more difficult when no one shows up to get them after the three weeks are up. Instead, they must continue to survive for many long months while wondering if the rest of the world even exists anymore. I would add some caution for readers in terms of some of the themes that can be sensitive, and I will include them here, which could be spoilers (so skip to below if you are concerned about spoilers). More specifically, I would warn for a girl who was raised as a boy (but may identify as a girl), pedophilia (one of the adults decides that she should marry him/that her presence is a gift for him), religious in the extreme with casting out of demons/religious figure not very pious, and stoning of others/bullying/mistreatment. What I loved: The imagery here is fantastic. We feel the isolation, the desolation of the landscape, and the unforgiving nature of survival. The world-building in terms of the rocky island was very good. We got a very good feel for how this fowling trip was. What left me wanting more: The book moves very slowly, and facts are often revealed slowly, making it hard to visualize the world outside of the island and understand the societal structure (though this may be presumed as it is historical/based on truth). The slow pace can make it hard to read in places, but on the other hand, this does help build the isolation and overwhelming nature of the trip. Final verdict: Fans of LORD OF THE FLIES will enjoy this new tale of historical survival in an unforgiving environment and with evolving social structures. Would recommend for people who like compelling world-building and immersive scenarios. Please note that I received an ARC. All opinions are my own.
Anonymous 4 months ago
This book is haunting, all the more so because it is based on a true story. It would be impossible not to compare this book to Lord of the Flies, but I find that despite the isolation and occasional despair of this story, it is much more hopeful. The characters take on distinct personalities, and the reader cannot help but hope for them to be able to cooperate and survive. The boys' attempts to recreate order, leadership, and meaning despite the harsh conditions force an older reader to think about the foundations of our own societies. A younger reader could enjoy the survival story without drawing larger conclusions. I couldn't put the book down, and read it all in one evening, even past my bedtime. I highly recommend this book.
marongm8 4 months ago
This book was received as an ARC from Flatiron Books in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own. I was not sure what to expect with this book. Based on the cover design, I thought this was going to be a sci-fi thriller novel but boy was I wrong in the best possible way. The book ended up being a survival of the fittest thriller focusing on the transition to manhood and going through a sacred ritual such as bird hunting in the sea stac to prove your worthiness of manhood. I did not want to stop reading this book because I was so wrongfully intrigued that I needed to know more about it all, everything from the plot to the characters to the climax and lastly the theme of it all and I was amazed all the way. We will consider adding this title to our YFiction collection at the library. That is why we give this book 5 stars.
Kristi_thebookfaery 5 months ago
“Cold laid clammy hands on their necks and kidneys, their hands and feet. It twanged on their muscles like a harpist.” -Geraldine McCaughrean, Author, Where the World Ends First sentence: His mother gave him a new pair of socks, a puffin to eat on the voyage and a kiss on the cheek. Where the World Ends is a gorgeously written book by Geraldine McCaughrean set in the 18th century and is a fictional account based on a true story. It centers around a group of three men and nine boys that are put ashore on the Warrior stac in the archipelago of St. Kilda to go fowling; the harvesting of “bird -meat, eggs, feathers, oil …” What is supposed to be a few weeks turns into much longer when the ship that is supposed to pick them up, never arrives. The story explores the hardship that is faced on this remote rocky stac as those that are abandoned face starvation, the harsh winter elements, and some of their own base natures along with the fear that the only way their loved ones would abandon them is if the world had ended. Despite this, there is the ever-present hope that they’ll see a ship on the horizon and remarkably, a continuing sense of unity among most present. Told from the astute perspective of Quill, I felt very aware of each hardship, of each character’s personality - faults and kindnesses - and the absolute misery wondering why they’ve been abandoned. With little more than a cave for shelter and hunger constantly nipping at their bellies, true natures are soon exposed; Some good, some not so much. One thing is undeniable, each boy and each man will be forever changed by their experience. It’s a tale of survival and tragedy but also one of hope, community and friendship and ultimately, resilience and bravery. This is a story that will stay with me. Thank you to NetGalley and Flatiron Books for the opportunity to read and review this title!