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3.79  ·  Rating details ·  153 ratings  ·  60 reviews
A gorgeous, snowy adventure, set in the wilds of Siberia, full of magic and wonder, for junior readers.

Born in a Soviet prison camp, Lina has never seen the world outside until the night she escapes with her best friend, Bogdan. As the pair journey across a snowy wilderness, they are pursued by a vengeful sorceress and her pack of shadow wolves. The children will need
Paperback, 384 pages
Published November 7th 2019 by Walker Books Ltd.
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Average rating 3.79  · 
Rating details
 ·  153 ratings  ·  60 reviews

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C.G. Drews
Dec 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was such a lovely and icy magical adventure! I really loved how it tangled historical fiction and Russian fairytales together, and all the snow and ice and dubious sorceresses gave me Narnia throwback vibes (which was my entire childhood) so I just really enjoyed gobbling up this middle-grade magical fantasy this afternoon. Also that cover? Can we just say entirely gorgeous!

It follows Lina and her best friend Bogdan who are in a Russian concentration camp, planning an escape that
Nov 04, 2019 marked it as to-read
Shelves: owned
this sounds like Narnia meets X-Men and I'm definitely absolutely here for it
Whispering Stories
Dec 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Book Reviewed on

Eleven-year-old Lina was born inside a Soviet prison camp where she lives with all the other inmates and her mother Katya. One night she is approached by a trio of older male inmates who tell her that her mother said she could help them.

They have a plan to escape the prison but the camp is situated in the Siberian wilderness about three weeks from civilisation. They need food to survive the journey and that is where Lina comes in. She works in the
Jan 20, 2020 rated it liked it
Recommended to Sara by: Jade Ratley
Reading for the Middle Grade Monthly book club February 2020.

Lina has spent her entire life trapped inside a prison camp in the harsh wastelands of Russia under Stalin’s rule. So when the night comes to escape with some fellow prisoners, including best friend Bogdan, she seizes the opportunity to be free for the first time. But the other prisoners have been hardened by life in the camp, becoming cold and untrusting, leading Lina and Bogdan to flee for their lives. On their journey to safety
Max Lau  • Maxxesbooktopia
Jul 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars-books
“Bodgan had pitched their hopes on a gamble. An extreme one, at that. But what was it her mother always said? Life is a gamble. Lina couldn’t tell the truth now without getting him into serious trouble. It was all or nothing.” – Nevertell, Katherine Orton.

When I first freed this novel and overset to the first folio, the very first sentence of the novel had already captivated me to read on as the writing style was so beautifully crafted and the prose used was on point. It was spontaneously
John Moore
May 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Full disclosure, work for the publisher.

Didn’t know anything about the book and really enjoyed it. A snowy, magical and mystical middle grade perfect for fans of Katherine Arden, Abi Elphinstone and the like.
Nov 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
An extremely well written winter read about eleven year old Lina and her trek across the treacherous Russian wilderness to find her grandma.

The story starts off within a prison camp; the opening chapters were so compelling and so beautifully imagined that I felt as though I was Lina trying to escape with vegetables shoved under my coat. This extends to the description of the wilderness, where Lina’s bravery was about the only thing that forced me to keep reading as a terrifying sorceress with
Jan 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Wow, I’m not sure how I feel after reading this book, it’s such an interesting story with a lovely and slightly dark magical feel to it but at the same time I’m not sure about some part of the ending….Lina has grown up inside a Soviet camp in Siberia. She has never known the outside world and spends most of her days tending to the greenhouse plants for the camp’s Commandant. But one day Lina overhears plans of a break out, and those who are escaping need to take Lina with them. For the first ...more
Julie (Bookish.Intoxication)
Dec 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
"A whisper hung in the air. It felt as if it hd grown there, like a piece of fruit, rather thn having been spoken." p146

Nevertell is a fast paced gem. It is a middle grade work, so for someone a little older, it does read quite simply. I am filled with Hansel and Gretel vibes as I read this book. Two escaped children, working out who and what to trust, all in the magical scenery of the Russian wilderness.

I am curious about the internment camp that we started the book in. It reads like a World
Aug 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.5/5 stars.

Nevertell is another middle grade book for me that I surprisingly enjoyed. I was not expecting it to be such a good read for me, but it did become one of the reads that I genuinely enjoy and show my sincerest interest in. Here are my thoughts on why I think this book managed to grasp my attention wonderfully.

I shall begin with the plot. The story began with Lina, who was escaping from her Soviet prison camp with her best friend. For me, it sounded dark at first, but the magical part
Julia Thum
Jan 02, 2020 rated it really liked it

An enchanting, whirlwind of an adventure. The magic builds slowly and keeps you guessing right up to the final few chapters.

The friendship between Lina and Bogdan is heart warming (and they need as much heat as they can get crossing the frozen wilds of Russia together) and I really liked their devotion to one another, even when one of them got it wrong and the pair got into even deeper trouble.

With whispering stars, freezing words and magical capes, Nevertell whips you up into a
Jean Kirby
Jan 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
This starts as an exciting historical adventure set in a prison camp in Siberia. A young girl, Lina, becomes part of an escape attempt and is suddenly plunged into the freezing Siberian wastes with dangerous companions and one true friend; a young boy called Bogdan.
There is also a mystery concerning her parentage. Could her father be the vicious camp commandant?
Then the story turns into a fantasy, based on Russian folklore (Baba Yaga, Baboushka etc) as they meet up with a sorceress and try to
Kirsty Baggs Morgan
Nov 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A magical story set in Stalin’s Russia in a bleak, Siberian labour camp. Loved every page - a fantastic story!
Jessica M
Nov 22, 2019 rated it really liked it

Nevertell by Katharine Orton is a debut children’s fantasy novel about two young kids who escape a prison camp, in search of freedom and family.

Written in third person, Lina and her best friend Bogdan escape a prison camp — the only home they’ve ever known — in search of safety with Lina’s grandmother in Moscow. The escape and subsequent journey is as treacherous as the prison camp itself, which was home to ruthless guards and horrid conditions.

Lina and Bogdan show
Arkham Reviews
Jan 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed-on-blog
Nevertell is a unique middle grade novel, set against the bleak backdrop of Stalin's purges. While there are many children's books that focus on the Holocaust, I immediately found this rather interesting as the purges are far less well known to young readers. Orton does a great job of illustrating the horror of Stalin's regime in a way that still felt wholly appropriate, illustrating the constant fear of secret police, the terrifyingly innocent reasons why people (even children) could be ...more
Feb 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade
Firstly, can we just take a minute to stare at this STUNNING cover?...done? Good. If the synopsis on the back of the book hadn’t already grabbed me, then the cover would have.

When I saw the words ‘Soviet’ & ‘Siberia’ I knew this was going to be for me. SIGN ME UP! I literally said to amazon ‘TAKE MY MONEY’. If you know me at all then you will know anything even remotely to do with Russia, I’m there for.

Lina, our main character, is eleven years old was born inside a Soviet prison camp where
Aug 28, 2019 rated it liked it
This story full of wintry coldness and magic started with Lina who is locked in a camp and finally decided to run away into safety and freedom. This book is set during the harsh winter cold of Siberia, Russia and I have yet to read a book set here so it was definitely an interesting read.

I could feel the chill and the cold seeping through my veins of the weather that they are facing at certain times as the story progresses. I cannot even fathom how one would feel so utterly miserable to be in
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
This books tells us about Lina, who grew up in a Soviet labour camp with her mother. She escapes with her best friend Bogdan, and together they try to get to Moscow and find Lina's grandmother. Along the way they are however hindered by the sourceres Svetlana and her pack of shadow wolves...

The atmosphere in this book was superb. You could really feel the cold of the Siberian wilderness (and reading it during a storm whilst curled up with a blanket was lovely). Also, the magic is just wonderful
Nov 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Lina will soon be 12, will she be free too?
Her mother has bargained with 3 men to take Lina when they escape from the prison camp in Siberia. Born in the camp, Lina only knows the address of her Grandmother in Moscow. She does not know how far that may be though.
With her best friend Bogden, catching up as they make their escape, this brings an added problem to the men.
Old Gleb warns Lina of the shadow wolves and worse that are said to haunt the woods surrounding the mines and cocamp.
When the
Jan 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020, physical-arcs
This book grabbed my attention as soon as I saw it on the BOGOHP table at work as the cover is just stunning! I definitely have a bit of a thing for Russian tales at the moment, so was very pleased when the 9-12 years book club I run chose it as one of their books to read over December and January.

I felt this book was slightly darker than the Russian folk tale retellings of Sophie Anderson that we've seen recently, and that Katherine Orton has definitely created a rather more 'grown-up'
Feb 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Absolutely loved this story, I thought it was a bit quick to begin with and too much happened within the first 50 pages; this soon levelled out though and things changed and more of a plot began to grow and grow.

Loved how this story turned out with the revelations that came out and it was very heartfelt and in some ways heartbreaking for one of the characters.

At times during the story things happened very quick and slowed, this was repeated quite a bit through the story when in certain parts
Christina Reid
Dec 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was the perfect read for Christmas Eve!
Set in a frozen concentration camp in Stalinist Russia, the story follows Lina - a young girl who was born in the camp and has never known the outside world, as she attempts to escape the camp with a group of people she cannot trust, followed by her best friend Bogdan, the only other person her age in the camp. Leaving is a harrowing experience, as she must leave her mother behind, but the concentration camp setting is not described too graphically
Stephen Connor
I loved the first 1/3 of this story: a bitter tale of the survival of political prisoners in a Russian camp. It was harsh, and plans were made to escape. Lina, the main protagonist, agrees with her mum to escape, knowing that her mum will meet her later. However, reality soon bites as the plan goes slightly awry.

Once outside the camp, the story weakens a little. Lina’s group of survivors disbands, and unexplained events occur. What was once rumoured to be the thing of fairy tale and legend
Insert Name Here
Oct 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Lina has grown up in a Russian forced labour camp. When a chance comes for her to escape, she seizes it. Now, however, she's out in the tundra, and out there fairytales are alive and well. There are worse things than Baba Yaga, but there are beautiful things as well. Can Lina find her way home?

This is a fabulous, magical story, steeped in folktales and magic. I really enjoyed every bit of it. Lina and Bogdan are wonderful characters, fierce and clever and determined. I'd love to read more of
Dec 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
A gorgeous, snowy adventure, set in the wilds of Siberia, full of magic and wonder, for junior readers.

There was an intensity to this adventure that amazed me – a hunger for survival and an innocent hope for a better world. Two ideals that were skillfully intertwined with the horrors of a Soviet prison camp and a gutsy escape into an unknown world.

The characters of Lina and Bogden were well written, as both their personalities and their emotions/reactions were genuine and authentic to their age
Jul 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“The coldness reached its fingers inside her skull.” Just one of the lines I loved in the opening chapters of this book.
I was so lucky to win a proof copy of Nevertell and I’m so glad I had the opportunity to read this book.
It’s a story full of magic, wonder, friendship and adventure set in the cold depths of Siberia. I couldn’t put it down and when this happens I know it’s a truly magical read.
This debut novel by Katharine Orton is one of those books I can’t wait to share with the children
Jul 27, 2019 rated it liked it
“𝑰 𝒓𝒆𝒄𝒆𝒊𝒗𝒆𝒅 𝒂 𝒄𝒐𝒎𝒑𝒍𝒊𝒎𝒆𝒏𝒕𝒂𝒓𝒚 𝒄𝒐𝒑𝒚 𝒐𝒇 𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒔 𝒃𝒐𝒐𝒌. 𝑶𝒑𝒊𝒏𝒊𝒐𝒏𝒔 𝒆𝒙𝒑𝒓𝒆𝒔𝒔𝒆𝒅 𝒊𝒏 𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒔 𝒓𝒆𝒗𝒊𝒆𝒘 𝒂𝒓𝒆 𝒄𝒐𝒎𝒑𝒍𝒆𝒕𝒆𝒍𝒚 𝒎𝒚 𝒐𝒘𝒏."

If you have a kid that is a bookworm, this book is definitely a go. It was great—fast-paced, interesting, and filled with tension. Readers will definitely race through this suspenseful story. There is an emotionally honest look at friendship, choices, and the pressure to survive what ever obstacle comes on their way. There are also some tense situations that drives the readers to turn pages
Grace -breadandbutterbooks
Nov 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thanks very much to the publisher for sending out an advanced reader's copy in exchange for an honest review on (where this review was first posted)

Set in Stalin's USSR, eleven-year-old Lina discovers her magical abilities while escaping from the prison camp she was born into. Though set in Siberian tundra, where Lina must battle ice and snow, this magical tale of resistance has much warmth. Nevertell is filled with beautiful settings and language, fascinating characters, and a
Barbara Edwards
Feb 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book deals with some difficult issues from the time of Stalin's rule of Russia. It all starts from the prison camp then on to the snowy mountains. This book captures your heart and you really care about the characters your heart goes out to them. Read this book in a day didn't want to put it down it has you gripped the action never stops. A good mix of history and magical elements this book is a great first book from katherine Orton and I'm definitely looking forward to future book from ...more
Annie Hoad
Jan 20, 2020 rated it liked it
I really like the idea of this story, snowy Russian landscapes, ghosts, mysteries, magic, and I did enjoy reading it. I'm sure it will find many fans.

But for me, the story was a little rushed in places, with the central themes and ideas being under explored, so it ended up feeling overstuffed at times.

What I did enjoy however, was the heartfelt friendship between Lina and Bogdan, and the challenging journey that Lina undertakes to find those missing parts of her own history and self. I also
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