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Echo

4.37  ·  Rating details ·  24,280 ratings  ·  5,064 reviews
Lost and alone in a forbidden forest, Otto meets three mysterious sisters and suddenly finds himself entwined in a puzzling quest involving a prophecy, a promise, and a harmonica.
 
Decades later, Friedrich in Germany, Mike in Pennsylvania, and Ivy in California each, in turn, become interwoven when the very same harmonica lands in their lives. All the children face daunti
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Hardcover, 587 pages
Published February 24th 2015 by Scholastic Press
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Popular Answered Questions
Gerberta Yes, this book is a stand-alone. It is not from any kind of series.
Prashant Krishnan True! Jens,Zwej and Drei are 1,2,3 in German! She probably numbered them from their ages

Community Reviews

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4.37  · 
Rating details
 ·  24,280 ratings  ·  5,064 reviews


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Amy
Dec 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A book worthy of great mention is the type of book:
a)That makes you ache when closing the back cover.
b)That makes you mourn when you say goodbye to its characters.
c)That has characters who live in your heart long after you have finished it.
d)That will bear recommendation for years to come, when you have a student who is ripe for a meaty read...one with extra depth and substance.

Echo IS that book! While some students may be afraid of its size, I would encourage them to look at it as 4 books w
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Elyse Walters
Oct 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
10 hours of listening.....
The audiobook is *enchanting* within seconds from the start ...
Otto is playing a game of hide and seek with his friends. He drifts further into the woods.....sits down by a tree, and begins to read a book he bought from a gypsy earlier that day.

The historical stories are narrated by 4 different voices.....and take us to Germany, Pennsylvania, and California. The storylines are interconnected and all centered around music. Tales about the Holocaust, two orphans and an
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Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘
May 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ by: Rachel Reads Ravenously


For a few hours, Echo healed my cynical heart with pure hope. Beautifully written and compelling, what I will call an historical fairytale - with all the hardships that come with it - enchanted me from the very first page, and my interest never wavered : Friedrich, Mike, Frankie, Ivy... They all earned a little place in my heart.

One might say that these stories are not free of some kind of simplistic resolution (and I agree), but in my opinion the novel's worth lies elsewhere : in the heartwarm
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Hannah Greendale
Echo opens like a fairy tale: Otto is lost in the woods and meets three strange women who tell him of a prophecy concerning a rare harmonica. Enter Friedrich, Mike, and Ivy - three children facing daunting life challenges in the shadow of World War II. In each of their solo stories, Friedrich, Mike, and Ivy are in possession of the same rare harmonica, leaning on music to get them through the hard times.

Myriad themes are explored in this book, but the thread that ties everything together is musi
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Rachel Reads Ravenously
5 stars!

“Everybody has a heart. Sometimes you gotta work hard to find it."

So I read this book based on work recommendations from fellow librarians. These are the librarians who do not rate high very easily and all of them told me this book was a 5 out of 5. I had ZERO interest in reading this book. I mean it's historical fiction AND magic realism? Totally not my thing. But I pulled up my big girl pants and checked it out and gave it a chance, and I am so glad I did!!! This book is somethin
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Taryn Pierson
Feb 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poc-author, audio
Don’t read this book.

Listen to it.

It would be positively criminal to read a print copy of Echo when such a stunning audio version exists. Even if you’ve never tried an audio book, even if you swear it doesn’t count as real reading, get off your high horse and just try it. Your mind will be changed in the first half hour.

The performances by the four readers are amazing, but what puts the production over the top is the seamless incorporation of music from start to finish. Before anything else, Ech
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Ashlula
Feb 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviews
I heard about this book from my daughter, who heard about it from her friend who read it 3 times within 10 days. So we were both interested in seeing what it has to offer.

This is a beautiful story which centers around music and a special harmonica. The music unites the stories of 3 protagonists, children that lived during the WWII era. Through 3 different stories and 3 pieces of music (Brahm's Lullaby, Auld Lang Syne, America the Beautiful) we are shown how prejudice, focusing on far-right nati
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||Swaroop||
Dec 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites, audio
#wow -- this one word could be my review for this enchanting novel, as I truly don't have any words to tell the world what an amazing experience this book has been. Just Incredible!

I can feel a quaver inside me, when I think of that moment when I almost decided not to read this book.

This book can best be described as "joyful" reading, right from the first word.

...and every night as they lay in their beds wondering what joy tomorrow might bring yet knowing how precarious life can be... They re
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Rashika (is tired)
***This review has also been posted on The Social Potato

Actual Rating 4.5

This book. Oh my god this book. I'd be lying if I said I didn’t know what I was getting into before I started reading the book but knowing how many emotions you will be bombarded with doesn’t really prepare you for them. Nothing does until you’ll sitting there yelling at the book for giving you too many feels (this happened). This book is so gorgeously written and so beautifully imagined and I don’t know where to start.

Perh
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Donalyn
Read twice. Still pondering it. The writing is lovely and the characters are memorable.
Katie  Hanna
Jun 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Friends and neighbors, I have an exciting announcement to make.

*clears throat*

Y'all need to read this book.

And when I say you need to read it, I mean you need to read it TODAY.

It's just . . . it's just so . . . I MEAN . . .

*falls on the floor in a heap and hyperventilates because HOW DO I EVEN WORDS RIGHT NOW*

Honestly, this has got to be one of the most brilliant literary masterpieces I've ever read; and I'm seriously not kidding when I say that. It's beautiful and magical and gorgeous and
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Susan
585 pages of historical fiction magic! I started this one on the eve of a second snow day in a row (of snow days I am NOT a fan) and actually woke up the next morning wishing for snow day #3 so I could continue reading! Now that, folks, is a HIGH recommendation! I loved the way Ryan wove three stories together across a tapestry of music, sprinkling a dust of magic from beginning to end.

I support independent bookstores. You can use this link to find one near you or order ECHO on IndieBound: http
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Brandy Painter
I read this back in February, but forgot to review it, rectifying that now.

Okay. This book is getting a lot of buzz and love, but again I feel out of step with everyone. I really liked aspects of it, but the entire conceit of the novel didn't work for me. There are three historical storylines bound together by a magical harmonica that is the key to releasing three princesses from a curse. The three historical plots are incredibly well done on their own until they all reach their cliffhanger end
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JonathanT
Mar 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: his-fic, middle-grade
WOW THAT WAS AMBITIOUS. And also surprisingly complex for a middle grade novel? BUT ALSO DONE VERY WELL. Pitch-perfect character voices, conflict arrangements that hit all the right emotional notes, and a well-composed plot all make this gigantic book SING. (All music puns very much intended.) Overall, it’s about kids who become heroes in quiet, ordinary situations by choosing to do the right thing. Also featuring: FAMILY, music, harmonicas, war, history, family... BASICALLY I APPROVE.

If you de
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Pauline
Nov 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Wow...you know the magic you felt the first time you read Harry Potter? Yeah, that.
I felt that as I read this book - it's hefty and complex and there are multiple storylines -
but, it is SO worth the investment of your time and energy!

The genre here is blurry - fantasy, fairy tale, historical fiction, multicultural - what exactly is happening? There is this magical element that is all about the POWER OF MUSIC and that sustained my interest. This book is beautifully written; I laughed, I cried,
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Sara (sarawithoutanH)
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
This book is so adorable and I loved all of the characters. This book covers a series of important topics and events in history, and I loved the fact the children will be reading this and learning about those times. The writing style was decent, although it skewed a little young. My biggest complaint was where each story cut off. This book follows three different storylines and I found that where the stories would jump to the next was very annoying. You'd be right at the height of the action and ...more
Colby Sharp
Dec 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Ryan is a master storyteller.
Sherwood Smith
May 19, 2016 added it
Shelves: fantasy
This was a beautifully written, clear yet complex, magical novel with a structure I really disliked.

I think the best way to describe that structure is that the story is a frame tale, going from completely magical to our world, in which we meet, one after the other, three sets of characters over about twenty years: Friedrich in Germany at the rise of Hitler (the impact on ordinary citizens evoked powerfully, and true to all my reading, yet done in a way a ten year old reader could grasp); Michael
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Caitlin
When I received this book as an arc, I was so very excited. The whole premise of the book was enticing to me, and I couldn't wait to dig in! The stories within the book are decent. However, I was hoping for a way better ending than that. There wasn't enough "wow!" to the way it was concluded. So much could have been done with tying these stories together, and then incorporating the fairy tale aspect a little more creatively.

The book is just shy of 600 pages long. My arc says that this book's au
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Monica
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I’m so thankful that this is my last book of the year. It’s a story set in darkness but full of hope. If I had to make any comparisons, I’d say it’s like The Book Thief meets Coco meets Pans Labyrinth. Also, I implore you, read via the audiobook. The music played really adds to the story, and the narrators are brilliant.
Beverly
Sep 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
So engrossing and lovely, a book that starts as a fairytale and evolves into an exploration of some of our darkest points in history, it is marvelous. The best book I've read in a while.
Brierly
Echo was a fairytale revolving around a harmonica. It would be a shame not to listen to this audiobook. I just signed up for Audible and after some thought I chose this as my first audiobook. Unfortunately, I might have set an unreasonable standard for them. Echo has a musical accompaniment that brings the story to life.

Concerning narrative, Echo follows three separate children during 1930s / 1940s, leading up to their future concert at Carniege Hall. The first story follows Friedrich, a young b
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Laura
Superb. This middle grade novel tells four stories that are all interwoven and connected through one harmonica. It's squeaky clean, age appropriate, and brilliantly written. The writing is crisp and has strong, historical details pertaining to the years during the rise of Hitler, the Great Depression, and one year after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. I would recommend this for fourth graders on up to 100 year olds, especially to those who enjoy a story that holds a musical theme to the plot.

Also,
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Beth
Echo is one of the most beautiful books I have ever read, or listened to as it were. The listening experience I think is superior to reading the physical book. Because Echo revolves around the magic of music, hearing the pieces that Ryan describes adds an extra emotional element to the narrative that reading alone cannot fulfill. There were many times I had to stop what I was doing, close my eyes, and let the music take me away. Those moments when I could actually hear the music and not just att ...more
Laura
Oct 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Fabulous book, recommend for ages 10 and up. It would help with the story lines if your child had some knowledge of WWII and Pearl Harbor. Enough real life mixed with magical folktales to make this a great book. I read and listened to this book. The audio definitely adds some more depth to the musical piece of the book.
Christie Angleton
Oct 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
WOW. Wow, wow, wow. The audio production is a FEAST for the ears. Such memorable characters in this captivating story.
Ken
Nov 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: finished-in-2014, ya
It will be interesting to see how young readers take to this ambitious book. My paperback copy stretches to just under 600 pages, always a consideration with books for children. That said, the font is quite large and the spacing between words quite generous. The book starts and ends with a fairy tale, but the bulk of it is divided into three main stories, all linked by a harmonica.

The first story is like a young readers' version of The Book Thief. That is, Ryan digs into the endlessly ample Nazi
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Duds Saldanha
Jan 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"(...) não importa quanta tristeza haja na vida, há quantidades iguais de 'talvez as coisas melhorem em breve'."

Tô muito feliz que esse é o primeiro livro que eu leio em 2018, porque essa é uma daquelas leituras que quando a gente termina a gente sente que PRECISAVA ter lido, daquelas que enche o coração mesmo.

Além de ter pitadas de acontecimentos históricos, o que faz essa história ser tão rica, além do tom mágico de fábula, é o ponto de vista único de três pessoas que não passam desapercebidas
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Patrick
Nov 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015-kid-fiction
One of the most beautiful stories I've ever read. One of a kind book...
Angie
Jan 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommended by my 17 year old niece to be read this year in our "family bookclub," I didn't know anything about this book so went into it with zero expectations. I have to say, I was most pleasantly surprised.

Echo is a genre-crossing book that is truly hard to describe. Somewhat of a historical fiction/fantasy, there are several stories in one. The underlying thread for me was HOPE. You finish each little portion of story at a cliffhanger of sorts and then the next story begins. I enjoyed the f
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KMS Gr6 Library: Echo 1 2 Sep 17, 2017 11:23AM  
The Book Club: Echo 1 2 Jul 29, 2017 02:10PM  
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Pam Muñoz Ryan is the author of the New York Times Best Seller, ECHO, a 2016 Newbery Honor Book, and winner of the Kirkus Prize. She has written over forty books for young people—picture books, early readers, and middle grade and young adult novels. She the author recipient of the NEA's Human and Civil Rights Award, the Virginia Hamilton Literary Award, the Willa Cather Award, the Pura Belpré meda ...more
“Music does not have a race or a disposition! Every instrument has a voice that contributes. Music is a universal language. A universal religion of sorts. Certainly it's my religion. Music surpasses all distinctions between people" -Father” 32 likes
“Everybody has a heart. Sometimes you gotta work hard to find it" -Mouse” 25 likes
More quotes…