'There's an empty notebook lying on the table in the moonlight. It's been there for an age. I keep on saying that I'll write a journal. So I'll start right here, right now. I open the book and write the very first words: My name is Mina and I love the night. Then what shall I write? I can't just write that this happened then this happened then this happened to boring infinitum. I'll let my journal grow just like the mind does, just like a tree or a beast does, just like life does. Why should a book tell a tale in a dull straight line?'
And so Mina writes and writes in her notebook, and here is her journal, Mina's life in Mina's own words: her stories and dreams, experiences and thoughts, her scribbling and nonsense, poems and songs. Her vivid account of her vivid life. In this stunning book, David Almond revisits Mina before she has met Michael, before she has met Skellig.
©2010 Hachette Childrens Books (P)2011 Hachette Childrens Books
Sanderson's voice is superb as MINA. When I picked up a hardcopy of the the book I found I couldn't read it without hearing her voice in my head. Her voice made funny lines funnier and touching lines more touching...
Skellig - same author and characters
Okay for Now - Gary D. Schmidt - which is also about a boy struggling to find out who he is.
The poem about school!
Both - laugh and cry...and cry laughing...
Too many wonderful bits to count.
She's a delightful character...delightfully portrayed. I didn't want the story to end.
Mina lives with her mother and she loves sitting in the tree in her front yard. The view from her tree is “extra-ordinary”! Sometimes there are baby birds and other beautiful and amazing things she can see from the tree, but most of all, Mina loves the night.
Even though Mina bubbles with optimism and joy, her life has not been easy. Her grandfather who used to send her treasures from his travels has given her his last gift, she has a lot of trouble fitting in at school; finding friends and living up to teachers’ expectations, and she misses her dear dad who died. Mina is trying to figure out how to be herself and still find a place in the world around her; luckily her surroundings are brimming with surprising possibilities.
If you like books about young people who have trouble fitting in, you might also enjoy Deliver Us From Normal, by Kate Klise, or Anything but Typical, by Nora Raleigh Baskin, or Stargirl, by Jerry Spinelli.
This is the companion book to Skellig, by David Almond, if you are home you can watch this youtube book trailer about Skellig.
"Stunning is the word"
I cannot recommend highly enough the recording of this book. The narrator sounds like a child, reads it in the most amazing fashion in the correct accent (or near enough as doesn't matter) and makes fabulously interesting, funny and moving what might seem peculiar on the page. The narrator really gets it! I would listen again in an instant if I were travelling again today.
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