Young Reader Eva Ibbotson The Star of Kazan

ISBN 13: 9780142405826

The Star of Kazan

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9780142405826: The Star of Kazan

After twelve-year-old Annika, a foundling living in late nineteenth-century Vienna, inherits a trunk of costume jewelry, a woman claiming to be her aristocratic mother arrives and takes her to live in a strangely decrepit mansion in Germany.

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About the Author:

Eva Ibbotson was born in Vienna in 1925 and moved to England with her father when the Nazis came to power. Ibbotson wrote more than twenty books for children and young adults, many of which garnered nominations for major awards for children's literature in the UK, including the Nestle Smarties Book Prize and the Whitbread Prize. Eva's critically acclaimed Journey to the River Sea won the Smarties Gold Medal in 2001. Set in the Amazon, it was written in honour of her deceased husband Alan, a former naturalist. Imaginative and humorous, Eva's books often convey her love of nature, in particular the Austrian countryside, which is evident in works such as The Star of Kazan and A Song for Summer. Eva passed away at her home in Newcastle on 20 October 2010.

From Booklist:

*Starred Review* Gr. 4-8. Ibbotson's latest is a galloping historical novel set in the Austro-Hungarian empire. Abandoned as an infant, 12-year-old Annika lives in Vienna with the cook and housemaid who discovered her as well as their employers, a sibling trio of eccentric professors. Annika helps with the housework and grows up comfortably in the warm house on a beautiful square, surrounded by friends. Still, Annika dreams of reuniting with the unknown parents who abandoned her, and when an elegant, charismatic woman appears, birth certificate in hand, Annika embraces her as her long-lost mother and agrees to move to the family's remote northern castle. The grand estate isn't what she expected, though, and she fights waves of homesickness as troubling clues begin to emerge about her new family. Ibbotson leads her characters through a delightful, breathless adventure that skillfully enfolds deliciously cruel villains, crumbling aristocratic families, stolen jewels, and a cast of lovable, intrepid professors and children determined to rescue Annika from danger. Viennese-born Ibbotson layers her suspenseful story with exquisite details that contrast the city's cozy clamor with the bone-chilling northern landscape, beautifully echoing Annika's plight. Masterful entertainment in the tradition of Joan Aiken's The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (1962), this will please Harry Potter readers, too. Hawkes' lively black-and-white drawings extend the adventure and nostalgic flavor. Gillian Engberg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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