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Hurricane Child

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  929 ratings  ·  244 reviews
Prepare to be swept up by this exquisite novel that reminds us that grief and love can open the world in mystical ways.

Twelve-year-old Caroline is a Hurricane Child, born on Water Island during a storm. Coming into this world during a hurricane is unlucky, and Caroline has had her share of bad luck already. She's hated by everyone in her small school, she can see things t
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published March 27th 2018 by Scholastic
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3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  929 ratings  ·  244 reviews

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What an amazing, complex, moving portrayal of a young queer black girl from Water Island in the Caribbean. Caroline's story is about grief, love, family, queer crushes, bullying, shadism, (internalized) homophobia, and friendship. It has a lovely poetic, magical realism to it. It felt very authentic to a twelve year old's world while is dealt with 'adult' issues but never simplified or talked down. This book was a wonderful reminder of how deeply children feel.
The Bookavid
Jul 24, 2017 marked it as to-read
i love this cover SO MUCH. so so much
Rebel Women Lit
Mar 27, 2018 added it
Shelves: arcs
There is a phrase in Kheryn Callender’s Hurricane Child that comes to mind when I think of this book, “exquisitely beautiful,” and truly, there are only a handful of alternative word combinations that can just as aptly describe this debut.

Callender’s handling of bullying, first loves, queer love and family is the kind of literature we want, no, *need* our kids to grow up on. The author expertly captures what it means to be a child of the Caribbean, highlighting experiences so universal among us
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lgbtq, middle-grade
Vivid and poetic. I'd add it to my books that should be movies shelf, but a movie would not be able to do the prose justice. Reminded me a bit of When Marnie Was There. There is so much packed into this 200 page book, and yet no question goes unanswered by the time you've made the journey.
Vee S
Oct 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Okay. I barely have words for how good this book is. Do yourself a favor and pre-order it now.
Feb 01, 2018 added it
#RWLChallenge: A book written by a trans or non-binary author of colour.

Full review forthcoming via Rebel Women Lit.
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is SO GOOD. Wow. Wow! I loved everything about it. I want every kid to have access to it.

This is a middle grade book with excellent writing that deals with real issues in a complex way. It feels like the author really understands young people and trusts them to manage very complicated experiences with careful consideration and bravery. I loved the main character and the way she perceived and experienced the world. I loved the way queerness was talked about and felt. I loved the story
ONYX Pages
Feb 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Pure. Magical. Authentic.

Exactly what I needed... decades ago.

But, also now.

Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This gorgeous and heartfelt novel is not one to miss. I don't think I've ever read a setting so tangibly depicted. Everything about Caroline's reality comes soaring to life as you enter her world, and you won't want to leave until you find out what has happened to her mother. This one has earned a permanent spot on my shelf.
Apr 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a really beautiful book. It would've been great to read this when I was twelve, I think.
I liked how it handled the journeys of all three characters: our lead (being a baby lesbian, feeling abandoned, being bullied); her best friend (internalized homophobia, dealing with peer pressure); and her mother (dealing with depression, and finding self fulfillment) and how each worked through their own emotions to get to a better place. It’s a very beautiful little little book.
Abby Johnson
Caroline's mother has left and she has no idea why. Ever since she was little, Caroline has seen things that others can't see, but she has no idea what it means. When a new girl shows up at her school, inspiring new and intriguing feelings in Caroline, she agrees to help Caroline find her mother. As a child born during a hurricane, Caroline hopes she'll be able to weather any storm, but this one will test her to the limits.

This book had its moments, but it was a little unfocused at times. Betwe
Dec 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Hurricane Child is a slow and beautiful story about a girl trying to navigate through her loneliness and the relationships in her life. I really felt I was on the Virgin Islands with the visceral descriptions of the sea and town, the way Caroline moves through her world is so confident and natural, but tinged with a slowness because of her grief. idk. Kalinda was such a good character and I loved her way of speaking her thoughts and how deep she was; the stuff she thought about reminded me of be ...more
Kat B.
Jul 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I LOVED this book. I felt immediately drawn into the mind and heart of the young character and her complicated and powerful feelings. I was right there with her as she experienced the first turbulent, shocking waves of love, and as she tried to understand her relationship to home/family. I loved her fierce confidence, her magic, and the way she changed throughout the book. I love that this book exists for kids and adults- we need more books that normalize queer love, especially written by and ab ...more
Chance Lee
May 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: j-fic
Hurricane Child is about a young girl in the Virgin Islands whose mother abandons her, who is bullied, and who develops a crush on a female classmate. The book address issues of racism, colorism, homophobia and also takes some insane detours into spiritualism and parallel worlds. So much is packed into a short book. The writing is lyrical and literary and I just loved it.

Good quotes: "I think we must be closer to being alive than adults. They've been alive too long to remember the passion of liv
4.5 stars
This is an absolutely beautiful, often heartbreaking, novel. The first-person descriptions of the twelve-year-old main character being bullied just about broke me. I love that coming out to herself was part of her story, but there were so many things going on in the MC's life, and they all felt 100% true to the story and the narrative voice. I don't know where to begin to describe a short middle-grade book that does so many things to perfection except to say Hurricane Child is an amazi
Priscilla (Bookie Charm)
Feb 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-star
It was like the world got confused and turned upside down, and we were floating on the stars, and above our heads were the jellyfish and the sea.

This book is so dam beautiful and I felt so tingly and charged after reading it. Kheryn Callender is from St. Thomas and was able to craft such an exquisitely beautiful, haunting, and magical story about a queer black girl from an island in the Caribbean. The writing is so vivid and at times I felt a bit of sensory overload. So while I quite enjoyed l
A beautiful novel.
This reads like it should be a classic.
This book was not for me. Not only were the main characters unlikable, but the themes in this story seemed much too heavy to be geared toward young readers (now, I know, depending on where children grow up and what their sexual orientation is, or what their home life is like, this story isn't any worse than what they've experienced, but the way this story is written doesn't seem like it would bring a reader in, especially a young reader. The writing style, to me, doesn't seem as if it were writt ...more
Keri Douglas
Apr 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Although the language is beautifully written, the plot had a few too many threads and complications. Caroline is born during a hurricane in the USVIs which traditionally makes her unlucky. After her mother disappears and she is left with her now single and absentminded father, Caroline spends much of her thoughts trying to decide how to go find her mother. In the meantime, she is “haunted” by a black dress wearing spirit, she is bullied by everyone at school including teachers, a neighbor girl c ...more
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Apr 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
There aren't enough books about little girls who struggle to feel love while trying to reconcile their romantic feelings for other girls. Caroline Murphy grows up on Water Island and rides a boat to school on St Thomas. This depiction of the U.S. Virgin Islands is much more real than images created to promote tourism and you can tell there are whole worlds hidden from outsiders.
Nadia L. Hohn
Apr 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a great book and refreshing. I will be writing a review for an online journal so I have kept my Goodreads review brief here.
“The idea of not being alone – of having someone who sees me, same way I see the things that no one else can see, makes me feel like I’m real. Like I deserve to exist on this planet alongside everyone else. That I get to be here because there’s someone else who wants me here too.”

A new favourite. Here’s some reasons I adored this:
• Gorgeous, poetic writing
• The incorporation of Caribbean folklore
• Complex family dynamics
• The first middle grade novel I’ve read with an f/f romance!
• The portrayal
Ms. Yingling
Jan 16, 2018 rated it liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Caroline Murphy lives in the US Virgin Islands, and is considered unlucky because she was born during a hurricane. Her life certainly bears out this assertion-- her mother has left the family, her father's slightly younger illegitimate daughter has moved nearby, and she is always in trouble at school. She does have an ally in the principal of her school, who knew her mother, but not only are the other students mean to her, her classroom teacher is as well. When a new stu
This was such an interesting story!
It's about Caroline, a lonely black girl living on Water Island looking for her mother who has disappeared. She's twelve years old, sometimes sees things no one else can see and has never had a friend before Kalinda arrives at school.

I still kind of feel like floating on this story. The writing..felt like the sea? idk, but it fits great with the magical realism. It's heartbreaking too. It's about first love, two girls, family and all the pain and joy those thin
Jul 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
A lovely middle grade novel about the power of friendship and family.

Caroline lives with her father on Water Island, a small island near St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands. She's angry (her mom took off a year ago), lonely (she's bullied by the wealthier and lighter-skinned girls at school), and haunted by spirits no one else can see.

When a popular new student from Barbados named Kalinda befriends her, Caroline is buoyed by their friendship. Kalinda, too, is estranged from part of her family
Hannah Givens
Nov 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: lgbt, middle-grade
I loved the magical-realism parts of this book, the heavy island descriptions, the character of Caroline. It's very rare to see queer kids in middle-grade, and to have a book I can recommend with a queer girl of color as the lead is awesome. (CN: severe bullying.) (Also an aside: This was recommended to me as a book with a bisexual lead, but there don't seem to be any boys in the book at all and Caroline doesn't mention anything about it.)

Unfortunately, I found the emotional moments in the book
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“I know he tried, and he's still trying, and he'll still make mistakes sometimes, because he's a human being, and I've learned now that this is what human beings are always destined to do. Including me" -Caroline” 0 likes
“White people once used the Bible to say that we should be slaves.” “What does that have anything to do with this?” “Everything,” I tell her. “It means we should think for ourselves. Decide if something is wrong just because someone says it’s so, or decide it’s right because that’s how we feel.” 0 likes
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