Mary's Reviews > Gleam and Glow

Gleam and Glow by Eve Bunting
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Nov 07, 09

bookshelves: historical-fiction

Recommended for ages 5-12

From Booklist
Ages 6-9. Bunting uses a true story from Bosnia to weave an effective tale of loss and hope. Eight-year-old Viktor and his little sister, Marina, miss their father when he goes off to fight with the underground, and their mother knows they too must soon leave. Another refugee leaves the children two golden fish, and Marina, especially, is enchanted and names them Gleam and Glow. When the family depart, leaving their home and garden, Viktor puts Gleam and Glow in the pond by their house. They cross the border and live for many months in a camp, where their father eventually finds them. When they return home, the house is a skeleton, but the fish have multiplied and filled the pond with gold. Sylvada uses strong texture and shape in his oils, focusing on a single image: a burning house, an abandoned garden, tired people on a long road. The golden glow of the darting fish lights the story with promise. GraceAnne DeCandido

Gorgeous illustrations in this book, but I wanted more history in this historical fiction. I don't know very much about Bosnia, so I was hoping I would learn more about it by reading this story. I understand that Eve Bunting, from the authors note at the back of the book, wants this story to be "for people everywhere who have been forced from the lives they have known and who find hope in the most unexpected places." However, I think, if I was given a little bit more information about the war that was going on, I would get inspiration from the story while also learning a little bit about recent history.
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message 1: by Ruth (new)

Ruth I appreciate the interesting and important critique you provide for this book!


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