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Miracles on Maple Hill

3.79  ·  Rating Details  ·  6,881 Ratings  ·  353 Reviews
Marly and her family share many adventures when they move from the city to a farmhouse on Maple Hill. Her father is recovering from being a prisoner-of-war. The small town and the varied happenings and activities of country life help them to recover from past unhappiness, and bond more closely as a family.
Paperback, 256 pages
Published August 1st 2003 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 1956)
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The Giver by Lois LowryHoles by Louis SacharA Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'EngleNumber the Stars by Lois LowryBridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
The Most Deserving Newbery
67th out of 99 books — 2,476 voters
The Giver by Lois LowryA Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'EngleHoles by Louis SacharNumber the Stars by Lois LowryBridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
Newbery Medal Winner Books
53rd out of 96 books — 291 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Toni Pilcher
I am not at all surprised that this book won the Newbery Medal in 1957: besides having a pleasant pastoral narrative and lyrical dialogue, Miracles has an engaging, young, at times naive main character. Marly is most admirable in her search for miracles and especially in her discovery that she can create her own miracles. I rejoiced along with her when the sap first rose in the trees and when "the twigs turned to lace" and when her daddy started feeling better after everything that had happened ...more
Charlene Intriago
This was a 1957 Newbery award winner. Dad (Dale) has returned from being a POW in WWII. The mother (Lee) thinks a summer spent at Lee's parent's house in the country outside Pittsburgh will help her husband readjust. Ten year old Marly is excited to go; twelve year old Joe is not too sure. This is really a heartwarming story about what they all discover during their summer and the subsequent year they spend on Maple Hill. For Marly - it's all about the miracles. She sees them in everything.
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Jul 24, 2009 Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance rated it really liked it
Shelves: newbery, children
This is the kind of book I was afraid I was in for when I decided to read the Newbery books. The truth is that it was and it wasn’t. A white family, looking at the world, saying, “Oh gosh,” and “Oh golly,” facing issues like the son staying out too late and wondering where he is, facing how to get the big maple sugar crop in before it ruins, and lots and lots of “You can’t do that; you’re a girl.”

But it was also more. Dad was thought killed after time in a war camp, but he returns home, safe but
Linda Lipko
Dec 26, 2010 Linda Lipko rated it really liked it
Shelves: newbery-winner
This 1957 Newbery medal winner is a delightful, slow walk into a time when old fashioned values were the norm -- a time when children were polite; a time when children respected parents; a time when neighbors helped one another; a time when there was less focus on "me" and more focus on "us".

Yet, the book is timeless in addressing issues that are still with us today. Marly's father returns from the war, while the specific war isn't mentioned, one can assume WWII. Marly's father was a POW and is
May 23, 2014 Audrey rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of *Gone-away Lake* or *Return to Gone-away*. This book reminded me a bit of those.
What I loved most about this book were descriptions of the wild, wonderful natural world. The author is gifted in describing things in a way that made me feel like I was seeing them for the first time. Although the plot is quite simple, it really stirred me how the family is revitalized by their connection to the goodness of people and the beauty and wonder of nature. The outdoor adventures that Marly and her brother had also reminded me a lot of my own childhood. Joe was a bit of a brat sometim ...more
Dec 16, 2015 Jan rated it it was amazing
What a simple, warm feel good book about family, friends and seeing all the small miracles that make life special. I highly recommend it :)
Benji Martin
Apr 22, 2015 Benji Martin rated it really liked it
This one was really good. The 1950's Newbery winners, for the most part, have been terrific books. This one is about a family who moves to Maple Hill, a "sugar camp" in New England in an attempt to help their father, who was a prisoner of war in World War II get over his PTSD. While they are there, the children fall in love with their surroundings and discover many miracles in nature and in their relationships with their neighbors.

I loved the characters and the setting. The writing is beautiful,
Dec 13, 2015 Laura rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Just doesn't age well

Perhaps because I read "understood Betsy" first, which is also the story of a fish out of water, or rather a city girl in the country, leaning to do all the things that people had to do, to live off the land. And although they were written about fifty years apart, Miracles seems to be less relevant and out of date than Understood Betsy.

I think the problem stems from how each girl approached thing. Betsy would do what had to be done while Marly would say things like she was
Nov 09, 2008 Jeff rated it it was amazing
A wonderful piece of nostalgia about a girl seeking a few miracles from living in the country. Interesting story.
Apr 24, 2013 Ann rated it it was amazing
Shelves: newbery, historical, audio
This book gets an extra star because it is exactly the sort of book that I would have loved as a child, and therefore it hits me in the nostalgia spot, even though I've never read it before.

This was a mostly quiet book without any sort of action, and no real plot. It is, instead, a loving look at living in the countryside in the middle of the century, and adapting to a life lived out of doors and away from the city.

The beginning of the book dealt with the father's PTSD (although it is never cal
Dec 29, 2010 Aura rated it liked it
We had an hour to spare in the evening, and this very old Newbery (1956!) has been lying around for some time a la the sister unit, so we read it in one sitting and promptly went to bed. That is not a reflection on the quality of the book, necessarily. We have been tired. But this is the kind of book after which you can rest peacefully in bed, which recently we have been considering a good thing.

So are we going to talk about the plot? Well.

We're not sure what the plot is, exactly. We could sta
Henry Martin
Jan 15, 2014 Henry Martin rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
It is not often that I review children's books, but this one definitely deserves the attention.

Written in a simple, yet eloquent prose, this is a heartwarming story of overcoming life's challenges, of bonding, of staying together, and of the power of nature to heal the human heart.

Sorensen wrote a timeless novel aimed at middle grade children, yet this story is much more and will be enjoyed by both children and adults alike.

What a refreshing read. Through her writing, Sorenses made me long fo
Feb 21, 2014 Kathy rated it it was amazing
Reading this book was like a favourite blanket in winter or a comfort, pick-me-up food like chocolate or a baked pudding with cream yet deeper and more meaningful than that.

This book made me happy. It took me into a world of beauty, harmony and kindness, yet with real people and characters. The writer's style was easy to read yet steeped in fully sensory-loaded descriptions. Funny, very real happenings of the main child character took us on a great adventure to warm the heart.

On top of it, we le
Jan 03, 2011 Emily rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is in my small collection of paperbacks saved from my Elementary school days. It was a wonderful New Year's book to pick up and read.

The author captures life from the perspective of children so vividly. It made me stop and look at my own everyday tasks and surroundings differently. The miracles of this book are simple. The types of miracles we can all see in our lives if we stop to look: the blooming of a flower, harvesting a garden, laughter filling the house, the feeling of pride af
Dec 09, 2012 AnnieM rated it it was amazing
Shelves: newbery-read
This may make it on to my all time favorite list. Written over fifty years ago it could have been written yesterday. The message and lessons are just as true today as they were in 1956.

The audio done in full cast was perfectly cast and recorded. It moved seamlessly from one character to another.

While on my mission to read all the Newbery winners, I have experienced some really painful books, but also some gems. This one is one of the few gems.

I hope everyone gives this one a try. Books like t
Mar 14, 2016 Richelle rated it it was amazing
In some ways, this book reminded me of 'The Little House on the Prairie', but it had its merits beyond such books. Marly and Joe were given brilliant characterisations as they fought and grizzled just as children do today. We all laughed along the way as the characters sounded like one sibling or another in our house. Marly and Joe both had strengths of character that we were able to talk about and character references around. I also enjoyed the fact that the adults were not conceived as perfect ...more
Jul 13, 2014 Kathi rated it really liked it
Shelves: newbery
There is lots about Miracles on Maple Hill to love: the primary focus on family, the charitable helping of neighbors, the detailed appreciation of nature and the change of seasons, the interesting process of making maple syrup, and the realization that miracles happen constantly in our lives.

There are negatives, too: Marly’s girls-aren’t-as-good words and actions and her father’s seemingly too-quick healing from his prisoner-of-war injuries.

I can forgive the negatives, however, because this New
This 1957 Newbery Award winning entry takes us back to a much simpler time when neighbors were family, good deeds were not only abundant, but reciprocated frequently, and the work on a farm was not learned from textbooks or the internet, but by old-fashioned, hand-me-down wisdom and lore.

Fourth grader, Marly and her family move to Maple Hill, a sugaring community when their father returns from the war where he was held prisoner. They know that he will regain his strength and demeanor once he is
Charlie Moses
Aug 16, 2015 Charlie Moses rated it it was amazing
This is a juvenile mainstream book. Winner of the Newbery award for children's fiction, it was a marvelous and enjoyable story. You know what's really wrong with children's books? Not the writing - because the quality of the writing is every bit as good or better than anything being published for adults. And not the subject matter, which is often serious and thought-provoking. And not what's missing, because an excellently written book doesn't really require explicit sex or violence to grab hold ...more
Feb 28, 2014 Gale rated it liked it
“The Sugar Camp Cure”

It’s the mid 1950’s and Marly is excited about spending the summer at Maple Hill—a place she has long heard about from her mother. The family will take off from Pittsburgh and its bustling metropolitan lifestyle to enjoy a leisurely time on the old, long-abandoned homestead. At ten Marly is eager to see everything with her own yes--everything she has seen only in her mind’s eye—thanks to Mother’s reminiscences. But Daddy, returning from the war (Korean?) is sick both in mind
Julie Nell
Mar 24, 2010 Julie Nell rated it really liked it
I read this book to my two-year-old and my four-year-old. My 12-year-old read it on her own and enjoyed it too. It's a beautiful book about the beauty and healing power of nature and of love. It is told through the eyes of a young girl, whose family leaves the city for a year on a farm on Maple Hill. We also learned how maple syrup is made and now my 4-year-old won't accept the cheap imitation syrup on his pancakes.
Such a sweet, moving story about a little girl named Marley and how her family goes through the process of helping her father get over the effects of being a POW in the war (WWII). They move out into the country (Pennsylvania) to the house Marley's grandmother lived in and slowly their family is brought back together.

I loved this book and can't wait to share it with my 9 yr old daughter.
Apr 05, 2016 Samantha rated it it was amazing
Shelves: newberry-winners
What an absolutely wonderful little surprise of a book! Going in I expected another dud (the Newbery winners are very hit and miss) but I was in for quite a shock with this one. This the story of a family who travel from their home in the city of Pittsburgh to the country home of the mothers grandmother. The father in the story is suffering from what we assume is PTSD after being a POW in WWII, and needs to give his life some direction now that he's returned. He also needs time and space to get ...more
Feb 16, 2013 Jenny rated it it was amazing
AFter my 3rd time reading this is still my new favorite book-because I love the little girls perception of going from city life to counrty life. I consider it a classic. I just love it! It's so refreshing to read! Because I would love to live like this family and make my own maple syrup!
MIRACLES ON MAPLE HILL by Virginia Sorensen was published in 1956 and received the Newbery Award, the gold sticker prominently gracing the front cover of the paperback I read.

Yet, as much as I respect the award, I found myself feeling disappointed that this particular book is not standing the test of time. Of course, I cannot know if I would have had a more positive reaction had I read it when it first appeared many decades ago. But, as an early 21st century reader, I was underwhelmed.

To begi
This book glows with nostalgia of the forties and fifties. It makes me think of White Chistmas, and Vermont, and hot chocolate, and red schoolhouses, and cozy fireplaces. This Newberry winner is a sweet, escapist read that children will enjoy for generations.
Aug 26, 2012 June added it
This is a great classic for anyone to read about the process of making maple syrup, and in the process of farming as well - finding healing for the PTSD war veteran. It addresses all the little miracle that occur in nature as well as the healing of the spirit.
Jun 08, 2014 Laura rated it liked it
This easily could have been yet another saccharine 1950s children's book about a good little girl and her happy family leaving the city to live in the woods. It had that style of writing and those types of characters...except for one person who made this story stand out among the cookie-cutter books of this era.
Marly's dad is a recently returned POW suffering from (in today's terms) PTSD. While Sorenson doesn't dwell on it, the undertone makes this sweet story a noteworthy one. I have no doubt
Molly Cline
Dec 14, 2015 Molly Cline rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone that enjoys Little House series books
This was such a blessing to listen to, I listen to it on CD. And the reader was the narrator and there were other people for each individual character which made listening to this that much more special. AND it had a little bit of music in it too. Such a pleasant nearly 5 hours.

This was originally written in 1959 but the meaning of the story still holds true for today. Love of family and friends. And finding miracles in little things that add up to big things. A family is trying to over come th
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What do you like about this book? 5 29 Nov 15, 2015 10:14AM  
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VIRGINIA SORENSEN (1912-1991) was born in Utah, and it was her family's own stories that influenced her early novels of the American West.
More about Virginia Sorensen...

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“When you have done a great many good things, you forget to speak of them. It is those who do very little who must talk of it.
-Henry in Miracles on Maple Hill”
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