Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Middle-Grade Review: First Light

Award-winning author Rebecca Stead’s (When You Reach Me) first novel, First Light, is a unique mystery adventure set in an ice-covered world.  The audio book kept all four of us captivated during several recent car trips.

Twelve-year old Peter joins his parents on an expedition to Greenland so his father, a glaciologist, can study global warming.  Although life in the frozen world is vastly different from his usual routine in New York City, Peter enjoys exploring the icecap with his parents and their research assistant.  Back home, Peter began to have headaches accompanied by mysterious visions he couldn’t understand and these worsen in Greenland.

Meanwhile, fourteen-year old Thea lives with her people deep underground in a secret icy world called Gracehope where they settled to escape persecution.  Most in her society are content with the status quo, but Thea dreams of finding a route to the surface and the sun.  Thea and Peter’s stories are told in alternating chapters and begin to come together in this exciting adventure that combines science and magic.

Thea’s underground world reminded us all a bit of the city in Jeanne DuPrau’s Book of Ember series, though the rest of the plot is quite unique.  The audio book is read by two different actors, one reading Thea’s chapters and the other reading Peter’s, which made it even more interesting to listen to.  First Light is a unique story that the whole family can enjoy together.

Listening Library

Download an excerpt of First Light.



ibeeeg said...

I really liked this book. My 11-year old daughter liked it as well, although she much preferred Thea's storyline.

I cannot remember, have you read When You Reach Me? If you have not, you should. It is a fantastic story. My friend and I are currently in process of writing up our Buddy Review which should be posted on my blog next week.

Sue Jackson said...

Yes, I really enjoyed When You Reach Me (and I'm a huge fan of A Wrinkle in Time!)...thanks for reminding me to link to my review of it!

Glad you and your daughter enjoyed First Light, too. Funny but my sons preferred Peter's storyline!

Looking forward to your review -


Jan von Harz said...

This was a Twain award nominee last year, but I have not read it. Glad you enjoyed it, I will have to check it out.