In 1945, after living in Canada for five years to escape the war in Europe, ten-year-old Gavin and his fifteen-year-old sister Norah face the prospect of returning home to their family in England with radically different emotions.
Gr 5-8-This is the third installment in the lives of two British children who were evacuated to Canada during World War II. In The Sky Is Falling (1990) and Looking at the Moon (1992, both Viking), readers were introduced to Gavin and Norah, and followed them through their first few years in Toronto. In The Lights Go on Again, the war ends, and the young people make plans to return to their homeland. The conflict arises out of Gavin's reluctance to leave, especially after his parents' sudden death during a bombing. He truly feels like a Canadian boy, and he has almost no memory of his home. Pearson successfully captures the mood of the war era without sacrificing the youthful point of view of the protagonist. Historical details, like collecting stamps for war bonds and paper drives, are unobtrusive. The characters, even distant relatives and school chums, are multidimensional and seem to come to life on the page. Still, it seems that the novel never gets off the ground. No genuine dramatic tension is created until near the end, when Gavin announces his desire to stay in Canada and be adopted by the elderly woman he calls Aunt Florence rather than leave with his sister. That issue is resolved very quickly. He goes back to war-torn Great Britian, and to what is left of his family and their bombed-out home. The potential to engage young readers with wonderful historical fiction is in these pages, but it has slipped through Pearson's fingers.-Lucinda Lockwood, Thomas Haney Secondary School, Maple Ridge, BC (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
There are no customer reviews available at this time. Would you like to write a review?
September 03, 2007
Number of Print Pages*
Adobe DRM EPUB
* Number of eBook pages may differ. Click here for more information.