The Island of Beyond captures the same spirit as Atkinson's first book, I, Emma Freke, but this time from a boy's perspective.
Awkward, unsocial eleven-year-old Martin is being packed off to spend the summer with his weird great-aunt Lenore, who lives on a tiny island in rural Maine called Beyond. Martin knows it's going to be a terrible summer. But nothing about Beyond is what Martin expects. Not Aunt Lenore, not mysterious Uncle Ned - and certainly not the strange local boy who unexpectedly befriends Martin. Samuel is everything Martin isn't. He can paddle a canoe, scale trees and survive on his own in the wilderness. But he also has secrets, like everyone else on Beyond. Can Martin trust him? And can he learn to trust himself?
Elizabeth Atkinson has been an editor, a children's librarian, an English teacher, and a newspaper columnist as well as a fiction writer. Her novels include the award-winning I, Emma Freke. She lives in Massachusetts. Visit her on the web at www.elizabethatkinson.com.
This was a real page-turner with lots of character questions raised to keep readers interested. Highly recommended for mid to late primary.
A gently told coming-of-age story distinguished by its beautifully described island setting.
School Library Journal
A deftly constructed and consistently compelling read from cover to cover, “The Island of Beyond” is especially commended for young readers ages 8 to 12, and for kids in grades 3 to 7.
Midwest Book Review