Saunders, Kate Five Children on the Western Front, 250 pages. Delecorte Press, 2016, $16.99. Language: G (2 swears, 0 “f”); Mature Content: G; Violence: PG.
The Pemberton children, Cyril, Anthea, Robert, Jane, a boy they all call the “Lamb,” and Edith are all siblings, living in England during WWI. It is a difficult and scary time, especially for children. The four oldest children remember a myth from their childhood, about a sand fairy, the Psammead. They think the Psammead is gone, but, to their surprise, Lamb and Edith find the Psammead in the garden. Things that are already hard, because of the war, but with trying to hide the Psammead from the neighborhood, things are about to get harder. Everything will change for the Pemberton children.
This story about children coping with WWI, being mixed with a really fun fantasy, creates the perfect combination. I loved this story because not many people imagine a historical fiction story being mixed with mythical creatures. It is an amazing read and really held my interest all the way to the end of the book. The author had an incredible vision with this book. I wish everyone could read it.
EL - ESSENTIAL. Student Reviewer: ASJ