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One Came Home

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  8,808 ratings  ·  1,283 reviews
In the town of Placid, Wisconsin, in 1871, Georgie Burkhardt is known for two things: her uncanny aim with a rifle and her habit of speaking her mind plainly.

But when Georgie blurts out something she shouldn't, her older sister Agatha flees, running off with a pack of "pigeoners" trailing the passenger pigeon migration. And when the sheriff returns to town with an unidenti
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published January 8th 2013 by Knopf Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2013)
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Rebecca Weston The main characters are Billy and Georgie. Agatha is very important but isn't in this book very much.

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3.81  · 
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 ·  8,808 ratings  ·  1,283 reviews

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Sep 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
Another Newbery contender, so my critique is a bit more critical than others. There is a lot to love in this book: the historical setting was well-written, the pigeons were fascinating, and Georgie as a main character was terrific. It was a great little mystery with a lot of action.

There are two things that kept me from giving it a five, and are the two reasons I don't think it will/should win the Newbery: 1. I'm not sure how wide the audience is for the book. As an adult, I really appreciated
Jan 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I like children's books that sock you in the gut. Not the books that telegraph their hits or do the old one-two punch you can see coming from a mile away. No way, man, I'm talking about the books where you're reading along, merrily as you please, and then this hammer of a hit comes in from out of the blue and just hocks the wind right out of you. Middle grade fiction, also known as chapter book fiction for kids, can sometimes feel like one long unending stream of samey sameness. Then you get a w ...more
Jul 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I say let all the earth be alive and overwhelmingly so. Let the sky be pressed to bursting with wings, beaks, pumping hearts, and driving muscles. Let it be noisy. Let it make a mess. Then let me find my allotted space. Let me feel how I bump up against every other living thing on this earth. Let me learn how to spin.

I accidentally read this in ONE EVENING. It's a vibrant little book, pulsing with wonder for life and the world we live in. The plot is smooth and consistent and VERY unpredictable,
Shay Dawn
Aug 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pg, teen, action, historical
I really did like this book... but...

I've never really been one that tends to like westerns. This is a western. It's cool in the fact it's a YA novel set in the Wild West in a generation of cancer patients, werewolves and vampires, it's interesting to see something so different.

However, I have never been a western lover. I mean, yes it literally runs in my blood (my grandparents and parents live between Louis L'Amours like they live between breaths) and yeah I've seen hundreds western movies/TV
Barb Middleton
May 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
You can smell and taste Timberlake's sentences like beef bourguignon drenched in a saporous burgundy wine sauce. That's a mouthful, no? I've never used the word, "saporous." Makes me sound smart, don't you think? Okay, I know you are not fooled by me, but you might be fooled by Georgie. Georgie has a high-kickin' vocabulary too. She uses words like veneration, ornithology, ablutions, to name a few. She delights in using big words. Listen to her conversation with the young Garrow's girl: "'It's a ...more
Apr 09, 2013 rated it liked it
This book didn't quite make it for me. First of all, I am not sure what age group the book is for. The things that are of major concern in the book seem more like interests of teens, but the main character is what I would consider to be a tween.

Secondly, the narrative seems to be uneven - at times venturing into grown up things; then abruptly switching to more childish things. I suppose that is the nature of this age group, but it didn't feel natural to me. In fact, some of the plot twists seem
Apr 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: tweens, children
This is a slow boil of a story, set in 1871 in a small town in Wisconsin. A series of events leads to the sheriff bringing home the body of a young girl, a death her younger sister refuses to accept. As she leaves home to investigate, the story becomes part mystery, part adventure. However, it develops at a pace equivalent to two people rocking on a porch, chatting mildly about the weather. In part, this is due to a choice of the main character of Georgie as the narrator. She lends a humorous to ...more
Abigayle Claire
Sep 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Clever, witty, and kept me guessing! I wasn't sure at first, since parts are a little grizzly and the main character's voice is so unique. But all the little twists on Georgie's adventure kept me reading and I really fell in love with the story. I don't recommend for young readers because of intensity and ... well all the questions revolve around a body that was difficult to identify, so ... ;) Everything is handled well though, as Georgie is only 13. True Grit meets Nancy Drew in 1871 Wisconsin ...more
Outstanding story. Reminded me of True Grit (for a younger audience).
Feb 15, 2015 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Eugene Krabs (Amberlyn)
Mar 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
It was really good and full of suspense, but if you understand the beginning and the plot twist, you can see the end coming right at you.
Nov 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Really a dang good story. Not my favorite genres, but entertaining. Oh, and educational & illuminating, too, as one would hope from a Newbery book.

The mystery is kinda weak, perhaps. And I'm not sure how the mother lets her be such a tomboy (maybe that battle was lost before we met the family). But I love the subtlety, the non-preachiness of all the life lessons our girl learns as she pivots between being a child and being an adult.

I mean, it's big events happening outside her, giving her
Sepideh Dehghani
Jul 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
4.5 ⭐
The story telling was great, I will reread it several times!
I really didn't like this book. It is a book about a little girl who has a sister that is missing and there is a body that is dead that has on the sister's dress.
Apr 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Couldn’t put it down. How often do you get historical fiction that is also a murder mystery and a coming-of-age story, funny and sad, with multi-faceted characters, an intriguing plot, interesting little-known facts woven in so that you hardly notice you’re learning something, and it all takes place in our wonderful, beautiful, fascinating state of Wisconsin? (Yes, I did say fascinating. Could it be that Wisconsin is so middle-America-ordinary that it constantly compels people to scratch under t ...more
Thirteen-year-old Georgie Burkhart can shoot as straight as can be without missing, do anything else her grandfather taught her like tracking and hiding, and tend the family store account books. She wants nothing more than to run with family store with her older sister Agatha by her side. In 1871 Wisconsin, that's about all a woman can expect to do with her life if she doesn't marry, and Georgie is NEVER getting married. Agatha, however, has other ideas. She is passionate about natural and would ...more
Feb 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
The setting was extremely well done. I especially loved the way that the author handled the differing worldviews of the people in 1871 and the modern world when it comes to the mass hunting of animals. Georgie is nonchalant (for most of the book anyway) about hunting pigeons, and while the sight and smell of millions of rotting pigeon heads and destroyed nests disgust her, it is an evisceral reaction, not a philosophical one. On the other hand, however, the descriptions of the eviscerated nestin ...more
Aug 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One Came Home By Amy Timberlake is a very emotional and inspirational book. Georgie an average teenager has several shocking events hit her. Agatha, Georgie’s sister has ran away from home for several days and is assumed to be dead due to a body found the route she went wearing her blue green dress. Georgie refuses to believe the body is her sisters so she is determined to prove Agatha is alive. “You have to find her. Please Grandfather please." Georgie would never give up and help onto the hope ...more
Mar 08, 2013 rated it liked it
A spunky heroine and some killer writing save what was altogether a pretty ho-hum book. Setting out to prove that her older sister is not dead, Georgie is a character that many older elementary/younger junior high girls could look up to and admire. However, I think this book is geared more towards adults who read children's literature. Many of the references to the time I think will go over their heads. Plus, in the back of the book is supplemental material and a bibliography for those who want ...more
Apr 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Outstanding! The list of things I loved about this book would fill up my space here and more ;-) Voice, setting, fascinating (and little-known to me anyway) historical elements, page-turner plot, marvelous descriptive writing, a tremendously authentic sense of time, characters that almost walked out of the book, a puzzling mystery and even the author's note at the end was terrific. I can't wait to get this to my 5th grade book club kids. I think they will love it as much as I do.
May 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
What a great YA book (thanks, Christina!). I'd describe this as a Western set in 1870's Wisconsin, if that is even possible. (Is Wisconsin "Western" enough?) I instantly fell in love with the protagonist, Georgie --loved her spunk, stubbornness, and determination to solve the mystery behind her sister's disappearance. A lot of authors create precocious, yet totally obnoxious, characters, but Timberlake does a great job avoiding that.
Harold Underdown
Apr 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I read this several months ago, and all I have to say is that I'm not surprised by it winning a Newbery Honor. This is a powerful story that doesn't let the reader go.
Thea Armenti
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
The novel "One Came Home" was an extremely compelling story about a 13 year old girl named Georgie Burkhart, who goes on a search for her supposedly dead sister, Agatha, after their sheriff found a dead body in dog hollow. I loved how most of the characters had some sort of development, mostly Georgie and Billy's friendship. This book was quite emotional and had many twists and turns, right when I thought something was going to happen, the complete opposite does which is really interesting. One ...more
Logan S
Feb 22, 2018 rated it liked it
I think in my personal opinion that One Came Home was a very fun filled, adventurous book with a heart warming touch.
I feel this way about One Came home because, it showed me that even when you don't forgive someone for what they have done, you still be respectful and that you still love them no matter what the situation contains.
another thing that shocked me in this book is how amazing the metaphors spoke to me and inspired me to read more books with this type of situations and setting.
Aidan Copeland
Dec 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Extremely well written and had many great lines/metaphors. Personally I wouldn’t have picked this book up even after reading the description of it, but the story of Georgie burkheart you will never forget.

You will immediately get sucked into their world and won’t be able to stop reading because of all the cliffhangers at the ends of chapters and the immersive environment it creates.

The characters are well created and motives and their feelings and even how they think and speak are very clear. An
Grace R
Feb 22, 2018 rated it liked it
I thought One Came Home was a good read, even though it wasn't my favourite genre of book. I feel like it started off very slow, but as it gave off more information/mystery clues, I gained interest. Overall, I think the best part of the book was the ending, due to the suspense it gave you. Also, I really enjoyed how each chapter was ended, it left me wanting to read more each time. I think that the idea of the book was really cool too, and even though it wasn't my favourite book it was still a ...more
Jan 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
“One Came Home” by Amy Timberlake, a great adventure and mystery book. I could not set this book down it was one thing after another.

In 1871, in the town of Pacid, Wisconsin was a girl named Georgie Burkhardt. She was known for two things: her uncanny shot with a rifle and a way of speaking her mind. But when Georgie says something she shouldn’t say to Agatha, her older sister. Agatha runs away with a group of “pigeners” trailing the passenger pigeon migration. When the sheriff comes back to to
Jan 05, 2018 added it
I like this book a lot. I like the way the author adds suspense and makes you want to keep reading. While I was reading I didn't know if Georgie's sister, Agatha, was alive. I had a feeling she was but I didn't know why I thought that. I like the parts about the pigeons coming to their town. The author adds a lot of detail to those parts. I like Georgie a lot. She wants to find her sister and doesn't give up. I also like Billy. He helps Georgie and is kind of like an older brother. Towards the e ...more
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: h
I thought this was a great book, it was packed full of adventure and twists at every chapter, it was a very well written book with lots of description. One thing i wish this book would've had was a little bit of a better ending, i didn't feel it was a proper ending for this style of book, it kind of left me blank. Overall this was a fantastic book with plenty of enjoyment and a great use of figurative language.
I highly recommend reading this book if you are into mystery and adventure.
Ben Marcov
Feb 22, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: kevin
This book one came home is not one of my favourite but it was full of adventurous fun. This book to me is more full of Love and Sacrifice between characters mostly Gorgie and Billy Mccabe {i butchered his last name} I wish Agatha was more shined upon in the book because she had parts in the beginning and then when she left with the pigeoners sh was gone for the whole book until the end but ONE CAME HOME was a good book anyway
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Amy Timberlake's work has received a Newbery Honor, an Edgar, and a Golden Kite Award. One book was chosen to be a Book Sense Pick, another was reviewed in The New York Times Book Review. Her books have made several "best books of the year" lists, and she loves it whenever her books are chosen to be part of a state reading list. (Thank you!) Chicago's Lifeline Theatre has adapted both One Came Hom ...more
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“I say let all the earth be alive and overwhelmingly so. Let the sky be pressed to bursting with wings, beaks, pumping hearts, and driving muscles. Let it be noisy. Let it make a mess. Then let me find my allotted space. Let me feel how I bump up against every other living thing on this earth. Let me learn to spin.” 6 likes
“Living with uncertainty is like having a rock in your shoe. If you can’t remove the rock, you have to figure out how to walk despite it. There is simply no other choice.” 4 likes
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