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Greener Grass (Greener Grass #1)

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating Details ·  267 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews

"CLA Children's Book of the Year Award shortlist, 2009

Manitoba Young Readers' Choice Awards shortlist, 2010

Canadian Children's Book Centre Our Choice, 2009AStarred Choice"

Kit Byrne's family is a strong one, but their strength and unity are being severely tested, as life becomes more and more desperate in 19th century rural Ireland. Lord Fraser is the wealthy landowner, fr

Paperback, 276 pages
Published March 13th 2009 by Red Deer Press (first published October 1st 2008)

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Oksana  *Bookaholic*
This book was far from perfect. In my opinion, the author was trying to succeed in getting a whale to drive a car. Which means - it did not work. It started out like a good historical - good characters, strong plot.... And then it got really lame. The author tried to spin in the "magical old woman with all the potions" into the story - which also didn't succeed. I was just like, "huh? Where did that come from? Whaaaaat?", which is not a pleasant feeling.

I like it when stories make sense. It doe
Historical fiction, when done right, can transport you deeper into a world than any fiction book could do. Greener Grass is a historical fiction done right (well, up t'ill the end). The writing flows with beautiful ease, and it transports you deep into the soul of a famished Ireland. The characters were built with grit and genuineness, the world built with a sheer rawness that made the book seem like anything but fiction. The only downfall of Greener Grass was the ending, because I felt like the ...more
May 24, 2010 Debbie rated it really liked it
This is the story of 14 year old Kit Byrne and her Irish family strongly committed to their faith, to their home and to each other. Events are told chronologically in a very straight forward style. I would classify it as historical fiction and although I found it compelling and a fast read the subject matter, the Irish potato famine of 1847, is very bleak. A well told period piece examining classes, Christian charity, hard work, death and survival but at what cost?
Oct 02, 2015 Emily rated it really liked it
Greener grass was a great book, At first it was slow and I wasn't to interested in the book, but once I had past Chapter 4 it was hard to put the book down and I ended up finishing it in two- three days. the story was about a fictional character set in Ireland of 1847 where they had the potato Famine. Before I read this book I knew nothing except that it was a famine that killed a lot of people. Now that I've read the story of kit Byrne a 14 year old who's family struggles to go through this fam ...more
Canadian Children's Book Centre
“’Twas as though the hills themselves were crying that day, that morning when all of Ireland awoke to the smell of hope rotting in their fields.” So says Kathleen Mary Margaret Byrne who tells her sorrowful tale of Ireland’s Great Hunger. But tragic though it may be, Kit’s story is also a proud reminder of the hardiness, the courage and the unbreakable spirit of her people. As this story begins, Kit and her family see her father off on his annual pilgrimage to seek work in England. But this year ...more
May 06, 2016 Talltrees rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jennifer Powell
Oct 29, 2013 Jennifer Powell rated it liked it
in this book there is a lot of suspense. I would recommend it to people who like books about stuff that happened in the past. I liked how the book it has the main characters that your always hearing about and it has some that come and go. the author did a good job at explaining the scenery so you can picture it in your head. the main character is Kathleen and her family. its really hard times so her "pa" has to leave every summer to get work. but this summer was extra bad. Everyone's crops had d ...more
Feb 25, 2011 Elyse rated it liked it
I think that this was a good book. Over all the righting was done well. However there were some parts that I thought could have been better. I had to read this for a program that I was in but over all it was an injoyable read. I have actually recomened this book to some of my friends. I thought that it was a great insight of how things might actually have been with a bit more adventure added in. If you are intrested in a bit of history and adventure this is an easy read i wqould recomened it eve ...more
Lovetoread0919 pie
Jun 08, 2013 Lovetoread0919 pie rated it really liked it
This book was great. I usually don't read historical books, but this one was meaningful. It changed my perspective on how to eat my food and how I should be grateful for what I have.This book shows what the Irish went through during the Great Famine. It makes you feel what the characters are feeling. This was a great read and I recommend it to other readers.
P.S. It leaves you wanting more, but in that great book kind of way.
May 24, 2010 Nancy rated it liked it
Set in Ireland in 1847 during the Great Famine, you can just feel the hunger as portrayed by Kit, a young Irish girl. She tells the story of her family's struggle to survive when the potato crops fail. Family's are split apart as fathers go abroad to look for work. People are put out of their homes because they cannot pay the rent. Imagine eating boiled seaweed for days on end. Gives one food for thought - no pun intended.
I have a read a variety of non-fiction books on the Irish potato famine, but this poignant fiction story personalizes the story in a way that non-fiction never can. Many of the facts of the famine are placed throughout the story so that the reader learns the history in a much more memorable way. My only rider is that it isn't for every child as there are challenging issues such as attempted murder and loss of faith in extreme circumstances.
Feb 17, 2014 Jodi rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
Gobbled this book up in a handful of delicious gulps of reading. Such a sad but beautifully written book about the potato famine in the 1800s in Ireland. It made me so sad to read about how people tried to survive during this horrible point in Irish history. I can only hope that Kit and her family reach Canada and find a better life for themselves!
Feb 07, 2011 Chrisanne rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical
The 4 star subtitle "really liked it" definitely doesn't apply here. However the author has talent. I just wish that she would apply it to a less-depressing time-period. The characters are real with a brusque finesse that will turn traitor come the finish of the book. Although this isn't as emotionally devastating as Connie Willis's Doomsday Book, it still tears a bit at the soul...
Sep 28, 2012 Marissa rated it really liked it
A great book about a topic not much talked about. This book is about the Irish potato blight in the 1800s and the life of the poor. It tells of the hardships and class struggles. I think that the author was very knowledgeable about the situation of the Irish people and did a good job of incorporating the experience into her book.
May 21, 2010 Allison rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, young-adult
Really skillfully told. Completely believable and vivid, with a main character that is so real, caught between the ordinary concerns of young girls and life-and-death issues of injustice and survival.
Nov 17, 2009 Elizabeth rated it really liked it
This evocative, powerful and lyrical historical fiction that takes place during the Irish potato famine was not only a starred choice on the 2009 Best Books for Kids and Young Adults list but is also the 2009 winner of the Governor General's Literary Award for children's literature (text.)
Tudor Robins
Sep 28, 2012 Tudor Robins rated it really liked it
Love Caroline Pignat's careful, in-depth research woven beautifully into a page-turning, beautifully written story. A satisfying story giving readers what they want while adding in just the right amount of surprises.
Jul 29, 2011 Jen rated it really liked it
Very evocative of the time and place. The main character takes some surprising, but, I believe, truthful and realistic turns and decisions. It ends on a hopeful note but, given the subject matter, is not for children with delicate sensibilities.
Jul 22, 2015 Marlies rated it really liked it
For those of you who enjoy your history with a bit of sass, this is the book for you. Pignat won the YA GG Award for this novel and I can see why. It was interesting, heartbreaking, and full of politics. But best of all, the main character Kit was full of righteous anger and determination.
Jan 15, 2011 Denise rated it it was amazing
One of the finest telling of the devastations the IRISH potato famine wrecked on families and the necessity to emigrate as the final chance to survival.
Penny Douglas
This is a close friend of mine and am very proud of her talents and accomplishments! :) Awesome book!
Jan 10, 2010 Jane rated it it was amazing
I never cease to be amazed by the power of the human spirit. I will remember Kit when I want to whine about being cold or hungry...
A fast read - you won't want to put it down.
Nov 18, 2010 ♥Justine♥ rated it it was amazing
Amazing book but horrible ending.but i just found out that there is a sequel so i decided to rate it five stars
Mar 15, 2010 Gem rated it really liked it
I think Caroline Pignat has created a moving depiction of the Irish Famine. I don't know whether it's accurate, but I found it a realistic portrayal of people in that time period.
Dara Potvin
Feb 22, 2014 Dara Potvin rated it it was amazing
Really enjoyed this book. Felt for the characters. Great book for those wishing to read a historical fiction about the potato famine in Ireland.
Nov 17, 2010 Linda rated it it was amazing
Very good. I would've given it a four star for the incomplete ending, but I heard there is a sequel called wild geese so I decided to give this book a five star anyways.
Mar 05, 2011 Cyril rated it it was amazing
The pre-cursor to "WIld Geese", we learn about the Irish famine through the eyes a servant girl, and her desperate fight to keep the family together, and the flight to Canada.
Rida rated it really liked it
Aug 11, 2011
Emma rated it really liked it
Dec 22, 2016
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Caroline Pignat is the two-time Governor Generalʼs Award winning author of highly acclaimed young adult novels. Her historical fiction, contemporary, and free verse novels use multiple points of view and varied forms to engage readers of all ages.

As a Writer's Craft student, Caroline wrote a short story that years later became Greener Grass, the first of a critically acclaimed series, and went on
More about Caroline Pignat...

Other Books in the Series

Greener Grass (3 books)
  • Wild Geese
  • Timber Wolf

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