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Everlasting Nora

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  603 ratings  ·  184 reviews
Everlasting Nora follows the story of a young girl living in the real-life shanty town inside the Philippines' North Manila Cemetery.

After a family tragedy results in the loss of both father and home, 12-year-old Nora lives with her mother in Manila's North Cemetery, which is the largest shanty town of its kind in the Philippines today.

When her mother disappears mysterious
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published October 2nd 2018 by Starscape Books
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Average rating 4.08  · 
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 ·  603 ratings  ·  184 reviews

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Julia Ash
Oct 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
This middle-grade novel earned 5 everlasting stars from me!

My “tease” for EVERLASTING NORA…

The dead are more dependable than the living. Twelve-year-old Nora should know; she dwells among them both.

Over a year ago, Nora’s father was killed in an apartment fire that destroyed everything she depended on: family, security, regular meals, and friendships. No longer able to attend public school, Nora lives with her mother, forced to call one of the cemetery mausoleums "home"—the one housing her fathe
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Wow! This unique and compelling story introduced me to a lot of new things. Set in the Philippines, readers are introduced to young Nora, who lives in a cemetery with her mother. Nora takes on increasingly adult tasks as she tries to make sense of her new life after her father's death. Themes of friends, community, and sharing resources are richly developed.
I loved learning more about the culture, language, and foods of the Philippines. I want/need a Banana-que!!
Mar 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mg-novels
This is a truly amazing book that I have believed in since its early conception. Marie and I were critique partners when she began writing this book of Nora’s journey. The unique Manila cemetery setting is so rich and alive while you are reading and will remain with you years later. Nora is the kind of middle grade character you can easily root for, and her journey brings to light a much needed story of poverty, struggle & adventure. I can’t recommend this book enough to both kids and adults.
Yusra  ✨
Oct 13, 2018 marked it as to-read
an arc for this randomly showed up in my mailbox, but who's complaining? not me. ...more
Mar 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Such a powerful, heartbreaking read. I learned so much from this tender, beautiful book.
Mae Respicio
Aug 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this moving and gorgeous book. It realistically dealt w/tough themes of poverty and homelessness and still offered an uplifting message about family and perseverance. I remember visiting the Philippines as a kid and first learning about the Manila cemetery subculture--how truly and deeply eye opening that was. Understanding how others live around the world is an amazing way to build empathy in young readers, and I'm so glad this book exists. ...more
Ms. Yingling
Jul 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Nora and her mother have been living in her father's family mausoleum after they lost their home, and her father, in an apartment fire. They manage, like many others who live in the cemetery, to eke out an existence. There isn't enough money to buy the uniform and supplies needed for Nora to attend school, so she helps her mother do laundry for one family and also makes and sells garlands of flowers. She has good neighbors in Jo and his grandmother, Lola Mercy, and they
Brooke — brooklynnnnereads
Oct 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs
What a deep, important, and meaningful story!

I never expected that this junior fiction novel would be as emotional and impactful as it was. It was an important read but very emotional in that it's hard to imagine that some children are living in similar circumstances as these. I could not imagine any child facing the issues that Nora deals with and that was truly heartbreaking to imagine (and also realize that this story may not be pure fiction to all).

Due to this depth, I found that this nove
Karlita | Tale Out Loud
Last August, I welcomed Filipino debut middle-grade author, Marie Miranda Cruz on Behind the Pages for an interview as she talked about her character, Nora ( click here ). Being able to join this blog tour hosted by Kate at The Backwards Bookshelf and read a book with a character that represents me and a setting that’s all well familiar, my Filipino heart couldn’t help but swell with pride.

This book respectfully did justice on the portrayal of those like Nora, a squatter, who lives at Manila N
Anne O'Brien Carelli
May 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was pleased to receive an ARC of this book to review because it sounded like such an interesting story. I was not disappointed. It is a charming yet disarming story about how quickly families can become impoverished, and how young children can be clever and resilient. I was in Nora's corner from the very beginning and stuck with her, especially when her situation (living in a cemetery along with other homeless families) looked hopeless. This book should be in school libraries -- not only becau ...more
Dec 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Shealea by: Kate
Revolving around the life of twelve-year-old Nora, Marie Miranda Cruz’s debut novel delves into the growing divide between the middle class and those below the poverty line. After a devastating family tragedy, Nora and her mother are forced to live in Manila’s North Cemetery as informal settlers. Things take a turn for the worse when Nora’s mother mysteriously disappears one day.

Despite its premise, the story in Everlasting Nora is ultimately heartwarming. As Nora searches for her missing parent
A beautiful book for middle schoolers that taught me so much about a culture of which I know very little. The world can be a scary place, and bad things can happen to those we love. Yet friends can help us through those tough times and even in finding solutions. It reminds me, yet again, why one of my favorite quotes is from Aesop: No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. Thanks to Nora, and Marie Miranda Cruz, I now know more about the cemetery culture/community in the Philippin ...more
Melanie Sumrow
Apr 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wow! What a powerful book! I absolutely adored Nora and how friendship plays a key role in the story. The book shows how even the smallest acts of kindness can make a difference in someone’s life. It’s wonderful how Nora learns to appreciate the people around her and never loses hope.
Jan 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 31, 2019 rated it liked it
The best part of this story was the multicultural aspect since I believe there is almost no middle grade fiction based in the Philippines. Nora is a dutiful kid who doesn't seem to have a thought besides making money to survive and maybe get back to school one day. She isn't a well developed character. She is stubborn and persistent but otherwise not a whole person. She loves and resents her Mom both, since she resents how much time Mom gambles, although it is not entirely clear if Nora understa ...more
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
This book was so unique, insightful and eye opening! I got it as an ebook from NetGalley to review and I genuinely didn't expect it to have such an effect on myself and make me think.

I loved the story of Nora and her daily life at the cemetery. I've never before about people living in such conditions and it surprised me immensely how they've managed to create a home where the dead are "living".

I highly recommend it if you are looking for something different, humane and inspiring.
Everlasting Nora is a moving novel! And I am claiming it one of the best out there! I feel among many others; seen and moved by this book.

A powerful prose depicting the struggle of living in middle class going through poverty line. Who had lost a lot from an unfortunate tragedy that occurred. What has been lost, gained, learned, and what is yet to unveil along the way.

From the first sentence that I read out of the book, I was so sure that I will be in for the wildest heart-rending ride of my min
“If someone were to ask me to describe a home, I would tell them this. A home never floods during a typhoon. A home has a kitchen with a stove for cooking rice. A home does not have dead people inside it.”

The thing that hit me the hardest about this book’s plot was how absolutely undetachable it was from reality. As a Filipino – especially a Filipino living back here in the Philippines – you become so acutely aware of the fact that there people – millions of them – for whom the story you hol
Charles Dickens wrote many of his novels to show what life was like for the downtrodden, for those kids that had slipped through the cracks, through no fault of their own. And like Olive Twist, Nora, in this story, has had bad luck, on top of bad luck, in her early life.

Written about the real life existence of shanty towns in the North Manila Cemetray of the Philippines, Nora has to live in a mosoleum of her father, who died in the fire that destroyed their home. Although school itself is free,
Lisa Lewis
May 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
‪Everlasting Nora by Marie Miranda Cruz. I thought I was about to read a ghost story, but it’s not about ghosts. I loved learning about the cemetery homes of the Philippines. A great opportunity to teach empathy, friendship, addiction, and so much more! #collabookation #mglit #kidlit ‬
Dec 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley-e-arcs
4.5 stars

Don't ever think that since this is a chikdren's book, the story would be light and fluffy. This pretty much is the opposite.

The story of Nora is such an emotional and inspiring one. She lives in a cemetery with her mother. Both are dealing with grief because of the death of her father. Her struggles only begins there as her mother is a gambler, and that means they're losing more money instead of saving any.

For such a young age, Nora already experienced a lot of heartaches. Losing her f
May 27, 2021 rated it really liked it
Heartbreaking yet hopeful, I’m glad I finally got around to reading Nora’s story. (Or listening, as the case was.) It was compelling from the start, and to read about scenarios and places I’ve seen with my own eyes in the past was really something.
Naomi enjoyed reading this ARC, she buzzed right through it. Now, it's my turn. ...more
Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Thank you to NetGalley for an eARC of this book. All opinions are my own.

Wow.. I’ve read very few books set in the Philippines, so it was so interesting to learn about the way that some individuals live. Nora’s life is filled with challenges and obstacles that were overwhelming sad for me, even though there is hope and community in the story. This is a powerful and eye-opening story.
Sep 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Thank you so much to NetGalley, MacMillan-Tor/Forge and the author Marie Miranda Cruz for this advanced copy of Everlasting Nora, that will be released in just two weeks(October 2, 2018).

This story was so unique and beautifully written, I did not want to put it down! Nora, a twelve- year-old, is living day by day in a cemetery after a fire took their home and her father, leaving Nora and her mother alone. Her mother wasn’t making the best decisions for them either as she was getting them further
Oct 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Such a beautiful story! I loved getting to know Nora and the people in her life. Truly a great children’s book for adults and children alike.

I had never heard of grave houses before, so this story was educational. The author made me love the characters and learn a great deal about life in the Philippines. It was easy to feel compassion and to put myself in Nora’s place. This story deals with tough subject matter but is written in a way that will be easy for children to relate to Nora.

I highly
May 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Compelling and compassionate book, great for late elementary, early middle.
Jan 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
After reading the first chapter, I knew that I was going to love Everlasting Nora; I already called it. Aside from the references that made this small Filipino girl proud, I had a feeling the story would tug at my little heartstrings. I was not wrong. Everlasting Nora is the most genuine book I have read this year.

We follow the story through the eyes of Nora, a girl who lived in the Manila North Cemetery after a fire destroyed their old home and possessions and claimed her father’s life. They li
Phyllis Krall
Aug 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An intriguing read about a young girl who becomes homeless and has to live in the Manila North Cemetery in the Philippines. She is forced to endure unbelievable hardships and lead the life of a squatter, giving up many comforts of her old life.

Twelve year old Nora has to move to a cemetery with her mother, when her apartment is destroyed in a fire. Her father loses his life and all Nora has left to remember him by is his watch. Nora’s mother disappears one dayand Nora is left to fend for herself
Oct 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
When I saw this was set in the Philippines I snatched it up. From the beginning I felt compelled to do outside research on the Philippines and the facts revealed in the story. (Do people really live in cemeteries? Yes. They do). The author delves into some very serious and very real topics, including childhood homelessness and the destructive effects gambling addiction can have on a family.

I enjoyed the extensive Tagalog glossary and descriptions of traditional Filipino foods. I was surprised t
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Marie Miranda Cruz is a writer of middle-grade and young adult novels, a clinical laboratory specialist, a proud mother of two grown up kids and the wife of a Jedi Knight. She's represented by Paula Munier of Talcott Notch Literary. Her debut middle-grade novel, EVERLASTING NORA, will be published in 2018 from TOR Starscape. ...more

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