Book: The Wanderer (Sharon Creech)

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Book:

The Wanderer

Author: Sharon Creech
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Publisher: Joanna Cotler

Thirteen-year-old Sophie is the only girl among the surly crew of her three uncles and two bothersome cousins on a small sailboat bound for England to see her Grandpa Bompie. Through Sophie's and cousin Cody's travel logs, the amazing experiences of these six wanderers and their perilous journey unfold. For Sophie, the true journey is into her past — as she unlocks the pain she has been hiding from herself and learns that she does truly belong to a family.

The sea, the sea, the sea. It rolled and rolled and called to me. Come in, it said, come in.

Thirteen-year-old Sophie is the only girl amongst the surly crew of The Wanderer made up of her three uncles and two cousins. They sail across the Atlantic toward England, the land of Bompie, her grandfather. The sea calls to Sophie—promising adventure and the chance to explore and discover. But the personal journey she takes brings her deeper into a forgotten past than she ever knew she could travel to.

Sophie’s thirteen-year-old cousin Cody isn’t even sure why his father brought him along on this voyage. Everyone, including his dad, thinks he’s nothing but a knuckle headed doofus. But behind all the goofing off, he wonders if he has the strength to prove himself to the crew and to his father.

Through Sophie’s and Cody’s travel logs, the amazing experiences of these six wanderers and their perilous journey unfold. Stories of the past and the daily challenges to survive at sea swirl together as The Wanderer sails toward its destination, and its passengers search for their places in the world.

Newbery Award winner Sharon Creech’s newest novel is an adventure-filled story of a courageous girl’s journey across the ocean and into the memories of her tragic past. Sophie’s struggle to reclaim who she is inspires similar exploration from those around her—as the crew discovers the joys and trials of belonging to a family.

Reviews

Amazon.com

“I am not always such a dreamy girl, listening to the sea calling me. My father calls me Three-sided Sophie: one side is dreamy and romantic; one is logical and down-to-earth; and the third side is hardheaded and impulsive.”

Thirteen-year-old Sophie, skipping between “dreamland or earthland or muleland,” hears the sea calling her. Much to the concern of her adopted parents, she decides to join her uncles and male cousins on a sailing voyage from Connecticut across the Atlantic to England (and her grandfather Bompie) on a 45-foot sailboat. Not only does she want to make the trip, she feels she has to.

This perilous cross-Atlantic journey will make young readers feel the wind in their hair and the salt spray on their face. Newbery Medal winner Sharon Creech (Walk Two Moons) describes the sailing experience with astonishing precision—from the smell of the sea to the intricate workings of The Wanderer itself.

Along the way, Sophie proves her bravery and competence to the rather grumpy all-male crew; intrigues and captivates her cousin Cody with her beautiful, odd stories of Bompie that always somehow end in underwater disaster and apple pie; and spills her heart into a daily journal. Readers get another angle on her, too, as Cody keeps a log that alternates with hers. He grows to know, and like, and wonder about, his new cousin Sophie along with the reader, and as her mysterious past reveals itself bit by bit, we are all right there on the edge of our seats, ready for the boom to crash over to the other side.

Sophie’s adventures take her not only straight into perilous waves higher than buildings, but deep into her hidden past. This profound, suspenseful novel will pull you into its swift current and barely let you surface for breath. (Ages 9 to 13) —Karin Snelson

Barnes and Noble

With Walk Two Moons, Newbery Award-winning author Sharon Creech captured the hearts and imaginations of readers everywhere. Now, she takes us on a memorable new journey, with The Wanderer. In this moving and adventure-filled novel, 13-year-old Sophie is the only girl amongst the six-person crew of The Wanderer, sailing across the Atlantic. She’s eager to face the challenges of the sea, though her cousin, Cody, doesn’t seem to be serious about anything. Through Sophie’s and Cody’s engaging travel logs, the perilous journey of these six wanderers unfolds. But for Sophie, the true journey is into her past—as she unlocks the pain she has been hiding from herself, and discovers what it means to belong to a family.

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