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GIFTS FROM THE SEA by Natalie Kinsey-Warnock

GIFTS FROM THE SEA

By Natalie Kinsey-Warnock

Age Range: 10 - 12

Pub Date: June 10th, 2003
ISBN: 0-375-82257-7
Publisher: Random House

A gently predictable story about a mid-19th-century girl living in a lighthouse. Quila is 12 when her mother dies, leaving her and her father alone off the Maine coast in the lighthouse that he tends. A shipwreck washes ashore a small bundle made of two mattresses, and there’s a baby in it. They name her Celia, and Quila’s grief at missing her mother becomes bound up in the endless care a baby takes. When a plucky Irish immigrant named Margaret comes looking for some information on her sister lost at sea, it’s discovered that her sister may be Celia’s mother. Margaret spends six months at the lighthouse, learning to love the place while Quila frets over the coming loss of Celia to Margaret. Predictably, Margaret and Quila’s father fall in love and decide to marry, with promises of trips to the mainland for Quila to see all the things her mother promised her. Much atmospheric description of the flora and fauna—but not much to challenge the imagination. (Fiction. 10-12)