Listen to the Moon
This uplifting, heartrending story by British author Michael Morpurgo (War Horse) opens in May 1915 in the Scilly Islands, off the English coast of Cornwall. Jim Wheatcroft and his son, Alfie, are fishing near the island of St. Helen's, when Alfie hears an "almost human" crying coming from a centuries-old quarantine site. Alfie and Jim discover a half-starved waif and row her home to their farm on Bryher. "Lucy" is the only word she speaks, but her blanket identifies her as possibly German--"a lousy Hun," jeers Cousin Dave. Still, "Lucy Lost," who is a mystery, a silent mermaid or ghost child to the whispering locals, is a welcome distraction from the growing list of wartime casualties in France and Belgium.
Lucy is slowly brought back into the world by the bountiful love of the generous Wheatcrofts, her music and drawing, and a "whiskery old horse" named Peg that won't let anyone but Lucy ride her. Listen to the Moon is a story that invites readers into the sights, sounds and smells of island life, and, refreshingly, unwinds at its own pace, mirroring the steady day-to-day kindness of the Wheatcroft family that forms the cornerstone of this beautiful novel. --Karin Snelson, children's & YA editor, Shelf Awareness