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Moonpenny Island

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3.73  ·  Rating details ·  428 ratings  ·  108 reviews
From Tricia Springstubb, author of What Happened on Fox Street and Mo Wren, Lost and Found, comes a deeply affecting and memorable story about a young girl’s coming of age on her small island home.

Moonpenny is a tiny island in a great lake. When the summer people leave and the ferries stop running, just the tried-and-true islanders are left behind. Flor and her best, her p
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Hardcover, 304 pages
Published February 10th 2015 by Balzer + Bray (first published February 1st 2015)
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Primarily A It's more about friendship and seeing things from someone else's perspective.

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3.73  · 
Rating details
 ·  428 ratings  ·  108 reviews


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Rosi Hollinbeck
Dec 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My review for the San Francisco Book Review:
Flor and Sylvie are best friends. They have been forever. They live on a tiny island in the middle of a huge lake. In summer, the island teems with people, but when autumn comes, the summer people leave and Flor and Sylvie are the only two eleven-year-old girls for miles. But when this summer ends, things change. Sylvie’s parents send her to live with relatives on the mainland and go to school there. Flor and Sylvie can email and talk on the phone, but
...more
Constance
Jan 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is perfect. Beautiful writing. Wonderful characters with believable flaws and problems. Gorgeous descriptions of feelings of frienship, siblings, and growing up. I hated to leave Moonpenny Island. Give this book a Newbery, please.
Olivia P
Mar 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Moonpenny Island by Tricia Springstubb is a book about Flor O’Dell and Sylvie Pinch. Flor and Sylvie are best friends they are the only eleven years olds around. Summer is coming to an end and Sylvie has some shocking news. She is going to live with her aunt and uncle and the worst part is she’s going miles and miles away from the island. There is nothing the two can do about it. Shortly after Sylvie leaves Flor soon finds out her mother is leaving the island too. She leaves to go help a sick r ...more
Tasha
Aug 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens-books
The author of What Happened on Fox Street returns with a beautiful story set on a little island in a large lake. Flor loves her island home, loves being able to ride her bicycle everywhere, loves that her best friend is the only other person in her grade at school, and loves that she knows all of the people who live there year round. But things start to change that Flor has no way to control. Her best friend is sent off the island to attend a different school, leaving Flor the only person in six ...more
The Styling Librarian
Moonpenny Island by Tricia Springstubb – release date Feb. 2015 – Realistic Fiction, 4th grade and up –

Book Talk: What happens when your best friend is sent to a special private school and you are left behind, not only left behind but you are the only kid in your grade level at your tiny little island school? Can you bear to make new friends? What if your parents fights escalate so much that one of them leaves without a return day? Thank goodness for phones and email. They can help you connect w
...more
Melissa
Apr 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Very sweet.
Leah
May 26, 2017 rated it it was ok
I didn't like this book. The story was boring; nothing happens, at least that's what it felt like. I think it was supposed to be more dramatic than it was. I didn't like any of the characters either. I just didn't connect with anyone. The setting was nice, though. I like an island setting.
Judy
May 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015-books
Moonpenny Island, by Tricia Springstubb, offers readers a glimpse into life on an island: busy during the summer months, often lonely during the winters. The small population of islanders after the summer season makes for small classes at the island school. In Flor's grade, there has been only one other student-her best friend Sylvie. But this year, Sylvie is going to the mainland to live with her aunt and uncle, and attend school. What will Flor do without her best friend and confidante? This s ...more
Ms. Yingling
Jun 07, 2015 rated it liked it
Flor loves living on a small island in Lake Erie. She doesn't mind that in the winter there are about 200 people; she loves the way the island is quiet when the summer visitors are gone. She has always had a very good friend, Sylvie, who was just her age, but when Sylvie's older brother runs into problems, Sylvie's parents send her to the mainland to go to a school there. As the only 6th grader, Flor is lonely, especially when her mother goes to Toledo to take care of her grandmother. Being the ...more
Samantha
Flor lives on a tiny island in Lake Erie not far from Toledo, OH. It's a popular vacation spot, especially for birders, and most everyone who lives on the island year round is connected to the quarry. As the summer ends and the school year begins, Flor is looking forward to being 1 of only 2 6th graders on the island (the other being her best perfect friend Sylvie), but when Sylvie announces that she will be moving in with aunt and uncle in Toledo, Flor's whole world begins to change.

Sylvie's fa
...more
Chelsea Couillard-Smith
Jan 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
My favorite read of 2015 so far. Springstubb's characters will linger with you long after you have finished this engaging title.

Middle grade fiction is full of charming, quirky communities, but Moonpenny Island balances the unique character of a small town on an island with a richly authentic emotional experience to which many young readers will relate. The quirk is never overdone, and the characters are so much more than caricatures. From Flor's parents, struggling to connect with each other a
...more
M.
Mar 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Flor and Sylvie are the only 11 year olds on Moonpenny Island, a tiny island in a great lake. When the summer people leave, there are only a handful of families left on the island and when Sylvie leaves for boarding school on the mainland, Flor is devastated. It doesn't help that Flor's mom has to leave to care for Flor's sick grandmother or that Flor's older sister has a secret she's not sharing. Gradually Flor learns that she can cope with all these issues of growing up, she can cope and thriv ...more
Magdalena
Mar 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
Flor and Sylvie aren’t just best friends; they’re the perfect match for each other. So, when Sylvie leaves their small town to go to a bigger, better school, Flor’s world falls apart. Meanwhile, Flor’s older sister Cecilia is growing more distant, and Flor’s parents aren’t getting along. The book contains several subplots; for example, Flor befriends the eccentric daughter of a visiting naturalist and helps her strict teacher to rediscover her favorite childhood book. The overall theme of love i ...more
Marathon County Public Library
The only eleven year-olds on the small island, Flor and her best friend and soulmate, Sylvie, share everything and lead an idyllic life. At the end of the summer, however, suddenly everything changes. Sylvie is mysteriously sent to the mainland to school, Flor’s mother disappears supposedly to take care of her mother, her sister Cecilia is harboring what appears to be a dangerous secret and Flor is strangely asked to watch out for Sylvie’s wild brother. Nothing seems to make sense anymore, no on ...more
Czechgirl
Feb 14, 2015 rated it it was ok
I am so sorry for this rating. I read it because it was on goodreads potential Newbery's for 2016. Then, I read the beginning of this book and totally loved the book immediately. I loved the friendship of Flor and Sylvie. It remind me of my best friend and me growing up. However, after Sylvie started the private school on the mainland, the book no longer interested me. The story swung from Sylvie calling that she wasn't enjoying the school and Flor having to be the only sixth grader at her Moonp ...more
Yapha
May 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Flor loves living on Moonpenny Island, a tiny island in one of the Great Lakes, especially after the summer people leave. She has her best friend, her family, and the regulars that she can count on year after year. But at the end of the summer before sixth grade, everything starts to change. Her parents are fighting more and more every day. Her older sister, Cecelia, is acting secretive and sneaky in ways that she never has before. Worst of all, her best friend (and only other 11-year-old on the ...more
Donna
Feb 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
I always enjoy a good juvenile fiction book and this one was no exception. There is so much wonderful reading for this age level that gets missed because people think it will be too simple and not deal with difficult issues. This one is a story of Flor and her family and the other folks who live on Moonpenny Island in the Great Lakes. There are family issues, friendship issues, and growing up issues all enfolded together.

This said, the writing presents the story is such a readable way. Enjoyabl
...more
Suzanne Goldsmith
May 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: ages 8-12, and interested adults
I lost this book in the house when I was about three-quarters of the way through, and basically tore up the joint looking for it because I was so disappointed at the idea of stopping reading. Not so much that I was dying to know what would happen -- it's not that kind of book -- just that I was so enjoying the characters and wanted to be with them some more. I loved the discussion of how friendships can grow and change, and of how sibling relationships evolve. The depiction of the island was col ...more
Mary
Nov 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
When Flor’s best friend, Sylvie, leaves their island to attend private school, Flor comes to recognize that there are many more changes that she has failed to notice. A gentle coming of age novel that is set on a small island in Lake Erie. Moonpenny Island and its quiet isolation are a big part of this story. Some island residents like Flor and her father can never imagine leaving while others like Sylvia and Flor’s mother and sister are not so sure. I particularly appreciated the frequent refer ...more
MMM
Feb 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: the-reviewers
Moonpenny Island by Tricia Springstubb is a great book all about friendship and change. Flor is perfectly happy with her life until her best friend leaves and so does her mother; all while a mysterious girl shows up. Springstubb writes about the small island and swimming hole plunging you deep into the story and reluctant to come out. I recommend this book to anyone who loves a deep story and a beautifully written book.
MMM
Feb 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Moonpenny Island by Tricia Springstubb is a great book all about friendship and change. Flor is perfectly happy with her life until her best friend leaves and so does her mother; all while a mysterious girl shows up. Springstubb writes about the small island and swimming hole plunging you deep into the story and reluctant to come out. I recommend this book to anyone who loves a deep story and a beautifully written book.
Stephanie
Aug 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was a nice surprise! It began by introducing our two best friends, girls who love gallivanting around their peaceful island home on their bikes, which they pretend are horses, and I thought... meh. But by the end of the chapter I was hooked. I love that these girls have to face some tough circumstances, and they do so with genuine effort and emotion. They are not perfect, and neither are the adults in their lives. Excellent little book!
Michael Fitzgerald
Apr 15, 2015 rated it liked it
An awful lot of drama packed into a very short time on one little island. There are so many things that are introduced to no real point, and the book leaves many questions unanswered. I'll stick with Bright Island instead.
Sarah
Dec 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read an ARC of this story about a girl growing up on a small island, where life has always been the same until things begin to change. Her mom and best friend go away, a new girl comes to live there, and her sister is changing. The book's themes of evolution and slowing down to see what is "right there" will lead to great discussions in upper elementary classrooms.
Heather
Mar 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Started off a little slow and I had trouble with the narration style at first. However, after a couple of chapters I was able to sink into this quiet story of friendship and family. Good for 4th-5th grade.
Hayley
Just when I thought I couldn't stand another book about a young girl's coming of age, along comes this gem. Read my full review here.

Denise Vetromile
Mar 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Not sure about appropriateness for 9- to 10-year-olds - alcoholism, older sister sneaking out, perhaps better for slightly older readers?
Karen Gedeon
Moonpenny Island by Tricia Springstubb – Set on an island those in northern Ohio will know by another name, Springstubb creates a tween story locals, rock hounds and those who have lost friends will able to relate to. When the summer before middle school starts, Flor and her best friend Sylvie are up to their usual summer fun: bike riding around the island, swimming in the old quarry and of course sharing secrets, but as the days get longer, things change and before they know what hit them, Sylv ...more
Willard Librarian
Jan 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book because of the trials and tribulations the main character faces. Her mother leaves the family to "think", her best friend leaves the island to start school on the mainland, and her relationship with her sister has serious challenges. As Flor deals with these issues, she grows emotionally and as she sorts out her feelings, she learns to trust and love herself.
Maywoodbooks
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Beautiful writing- whimsical and honest.
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Sister James Bernard, my first grade teacher, taught me how to read. Our class had 60 children (yes) and we went up and down the long rows, taking turns reading aloud. There was absolutely no reading ahead, which was torture. I was always dying to know What happened next? (though with Dick and Jane, the answer was usually, Not much.) As I grew up, I began to wonder not only what happened, but why, ...more