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Riverland por Fran Wilde
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Riverland (original 2019; edição 2019)

por Fran Wilde (Autor)

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777336,112 (4.03)2
When their parents fight, sisters Eleanor and Mike hide, whispering stories and hoping house magic will protect them, until the night a river carries them to a place of dreams and nightmares.
Autores:Fran Wilde (Autor)
Informação:Harry N. Abrams (2019), 384 pages
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Riverland por Fran Wilde (2019)

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Mostrando 1-5 de 7 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
Magical realist story about two sisters. It's not quite a fairy tale, it's not quite a way to process abuse. It's about the power of stories. ( )
  tornadox | Feb 14, 2023 |

Very dark portal fantasy about emotional abuse. Densely written, and I didn't really get into it. ( )
  nwhyte | Oct 3, 2020 |
Riverland by Fran Wilde is a portal fantasy book for children (aka middle grade). I first encountered it during a reading by the author at Dublin WorldCon last year. This year, I finally got around to picking up Riverland after it was shortlisted for the not-a-Hugo Lodestar Award and hence was included in the Hugo voter's packet.

Riverland is not exactly an easy and relaxing read. It follows twelve-year-old Eleanor and her younger sister Mike, as they deal with an abusive family situation and periodically fall into a fantastical fantasy world made of the river and dreams. The abusive father is the hard part to read, of course, but there is not very much physical violence on the page. Wilde captures the fear, confusion and instability of an emotionally abusive household excellently. I absolutely felt Eleanor's stress as she strived to keep everything just right to avoid bad things happening, and I felt the way she was always kept off-balance by the house rules changing without warning.

The fantastical river world under her bed was where dreams come from and was also caught in a battle to maintain the delicate balance between dreams and nightmares. As well as Eleanor's responsibilities at home — to always do the right thing, to look after her sister and keep her parents happy — she finds herself tasked with fixing the leaks in Riverland; yet another burden. We watch Eleanor try to juggle more balls than a twelve-year-old should ever be expected to, and Wilde transfers some of her fear and tension to the reader.

So as I said, it wasn't a fun, light read, but it was interesting. I liked the fantasy world and I liked the fact that it was somewhere the girls kept revisiting rather than a place they went to and stayed in to have adventures, à la Narnia. And for all that I've emphasised the difficult parts of the book, there were also plenty of hopeful moments, though I don't want to spoil them. The ending was also a good one (though, again, not spoiling).

I highly recommend Riverland to anyone looking for a crunchy children's fantasy book I would probably hand it to slightly older children, because it does deal with some heavy issues. But I expect younger children in similar situation may benefit seeing themselves in the narrative.

4.5 / 5 stars

You can read more of my reviews on my blog. ( )
  Tsana | Aug 7, 2020 |
I went into Riverland blind, not even remembering Fran Wilde had written a couple short stories I had read. So I went in not expecting much, especially since none of the other 2019 Lodestar Award finalists really rose above the level of "pretty good." It took me a bit of time to orient myself in Riverland, and I wasn't sure what I thought because I wasn't exactly sure what was actually happening. (It's a tricky thing, fantasy books where something is magic and something else is only pretend magic.) But once I figured it out, I was hooked. Riverland is about two preteen sisters who use storytelling as a refuge from an awful home life; the older sister, Eleanor, is our viewpoint character as she works her hardest to protect her younger sister, and to keep herself out of the line of fire, too, by taking on responsibilities no child should have to. I found the book's depiction of her home life actually made me anxious, I was so worried about her. The way the fantasy elements are woven in is really effective, and though I struggled a tiny bit with the exposition, the fantasy world is evocative and the stakes high.
  Stevil2001 | Jul 24, 2020 |
Eleanor and Mike are sisters who seek each other out when the “magic” fails at home. The house is “magicked” when there is no trouble, the rules are being followed and Poppa is not angry and hitting. A mysterious river presents itself under Eleanor’s bed after an abusive episode and the girls dive in to discover a fantasy world that is in trouble and may be the source of trouble above. The girls learn that the Favre family line has long had a boundary agreement to protect the river. Now it is up to the girls to repair the agreement and stop the trouble from leaking into their world. ( )
  Salsabrarian | Mar 24, 2020 |
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When their parents fight, sisters Eleanor and Mike hide, whispering stories and hoping house magic will protect them, until the night a river carries them to a place of dreams and nightmares.

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