With sure, crystalline prose, Henkes discloses the breathless
suspense that even the shortest moment can contain, and the enormous courage
that loss demands. Young readers who plunge into these extraordinary
interlocking stories will discover mysterious, sad, and hopeful things about
themselves and the people they love.
A melancholy and often ominous sense of place suffuses Henkes' novel. The chapters alternate between the points of view of two boys visiting Bird Lake for the first time. The first is twelve-year-old Mitch, staying with his mother at his maternal grandparents' home since his father left to pursue an affair. The second is Spencer, accompanying his younger sister and parents on their emotional return to the place where his brother drowned years before. Their parents' ambiguous pain and the boys' anxiety about how it will affect their futures ...
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