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Journey to the River Sea

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  10,952 ratings  ·  781 reviews
Sent in 1910 to live with distant relatives who own a rubber plantation along the Amazon River, English orphan Maia is excited. She believes she is in for brightly colored macaws, enormous butterflies, and "curtains of sweetly scented orchids trailing from the trees." Her British classmates warn her of man-eating alligators and wild, murderous Indians. Unfortunately, no on ...more
Paperback, 304 pages
Published June 5th 2008 by Pan MacMillan (first published May 4th 2001)
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Alexis if its not for you, its not for you. Ive had the same problem with everything else I tried reading after this.
Sarah Goodreads is basically a social cataloguing site. You can view details of thousands of books, but there is no facility to actually read the books on…moreGoodreads is basically a social cataloguing site. You can view details of thousands of books, but there is no facility to actually read the books on this page. You would have to buy, beg or borrow them in order to read them. Hope this helps.(less)
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4.17  · 
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 ·  10,952 ratings  ·  781 reviews

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"Those who think of the Amazon as a Green Hell bring only their own fears and prejudices to this amazing land. For whether a place is a hell or a heaven rests in yourself, and those who go with courage and an open mind may find themselves in Paradise"
~ Journey To the River Sea

This is the kind of book that demands an ‘atmosphere’.....a stack of sandwiches, a tall cold glass of lemonade ;topped at regular intervals…a wooden Easy-Chair (the kind your grandpa sat on and smiled genially from) placed
Andrea Hickman Walker
This is a delightful book. There's something enchanting about the way in which Eva Ibbotson writes. This tells the story of an orphan who is shipped off to some relatives who live in Brazil. They do not meet her expectations and soon she's off having an adventure with a boy who lives on the river. This is a story about dreams and reality. It's about making your dreams reality in spite of obstacles. It's about the futility of trying to separate yourself from the environment in which you live. It' ...more
Beth Bonini
Aug 22, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've been thinking a lot about how children's fiction can play a role in the moral development of a child. Ibbotson writes in a variety of genres, but even her most humorous and farcical stories always have a particular moral clarity about them. She reminds me of Dahl in that way. The baddies are lazy, selfish, greedy, grasping -- and usually rich. The goodies are kind, honest, brave, resourceful, modest and hardworking. They yearn for connectedness, not things.

Like many of Ibbotson's protagonis
Sep 03, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very fun read. Eva Ibbotson has become one of my favorite writers recently. She's a British author who was born in Vienna and emigrated to England as a child in the early 30s. I raced through her adult historical fiction/romances (which are currently being re-released as YA) and enjoyed all of them, even though I was familiar her plot pattern by the third book.

This is the second children's/YA book of hers that I've read. (The first was The Star of Kazan, which I also liked a lot.) Following th
Apr 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: all-time-greats
This may well be my favourite book. The first time I read it, I was ten years old and it was like nothing I'd ever read before. It's just magical.

Maia, the narrator, is the orphan of two famed explorer parents. Her guardian, the staid and stuffy Mr. Murray, discovers that she has relatives living in the Amazon and, thinking that Maia needs a family, he sends her off to live with Mr. and Mrs. Carter and their twin daughters. Maia goes with an open mind, expecting a loving home and great adventur
HP Saucerer
A beautifully written, larger-than-life Amazonian adventure story that’s filled with lovable heroes and heroines, some dastardly villains and a cleverly worked plot.

Set a hundred years ago, the story follows the life and journey of Maia, a young orphan girl, who is sent from a boarding school in England to live with her distant relatives in the Amazon jungle. Maia has dreams of finding the loving family she has always longed for, but one by one her dreams are slowly extinguished. Undeterred by
Pretty interesting... It reminds me of like CInderella with da evil sisters except they r in da amazon and there is a nice maid lady
Anne Osterlund
Jun 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Maia is without a home. Her parents passed away in an accident and since then she has been a wealthy orphan girl compelled to spend her vacations alone at the Mayfair Academy for Young Ladies in London.

But at last a letter arrives that her father’s second cousin’s family will take her. At their home on a rubber plantation outside Manaus, Brazil. Maia is headed for the Amazon.

For most proper young English ladies, this might be a tad intimidating; but she is determined to embrace the experience. T
Jul 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This beautiful book was bought for me as a gift. I devoured it.
I still continue to read this beautiful story when I need a perk up.
Adventure, romance and a great plot.
Must read
I really liked the first half, but the plot of the second half was messy and overly complicated. There were also two mentions of Finn's Indian nature manifesting in threat of violence, which is super weird considering all the other portrayals of the Indians were peaceful and patient to the point of being taken advantage of. I really liked Maia and Miss Minton and the depiction of the Amazon, but the plot resolution really disappointed me.
Book Concierge
Maia is an orphan in London, in the early 1900s. She is in a boarding school where she has many friends and is beloved by the teachers and staff. Her family’s solicitor has finally found some distant relatives who have agreed to take Maia in … however, she’ll have to leave her school and go to Brazil where the Carters have a rubber plantation. It so happens they have just hired a new governess for their twin daughters, so Maia and Miss Minton will make the long journey together. While she is sad ...more
At first, this looks like a fairly predictable orphaned-English-girl-gets-shipped-off-to-live-with-distant-relatives story. Predictably, the family Maia is to live with in Brazil is horrid, and only allowed her to come at all so that they could get the allowance that comes with her. Fortunately, Maia has a very sympathetic, if somewhat mysterious governess who accompanies her to Brazil and in her adventures. It isn't until Maia's been in Brazil for a while that the story begins to come out of it ...more
Mrs G
A wonderful adventure story set in England and the Amazon. Richly drawn characters and beautifully written. I felt like I was there! Perfect for UKS2 - I'll be sharing this at school.
Jan 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edwardian, adventure
Eva Ibbotson, if still with us, would have been celebrating her 90th birthday in January 2015, but sadly she died in 2010. Born in Vienna, she had to move to England in 1935 when Hitler came to power. That experience -- of being uprooted -- was drawn on directly for novels like The Morning Gift (about a girl from a secular Jewish family escaping Nazi Germany) and indirectly, I suspect, for Maia, the young protagonist of Journey to the River Sea. Who has not imagined what life might be like if on ...more
Journey to the River Sea is just the kind of book I loved reading as a child. It is set in the late 19th century (I've always enjoyed those books more than the ones set in more recent times) and is an adventure story with strong female characters and intelligent kids.
Maia has lost both her parents in an accident. She lives in a boarding school in London until her guardian finds distant relatives who are willing to let her live with them. Maia is very excited to have a new family again with twin
Stephanie (Stepping out of the Page)
I read this at school and found it quite enjoyable. The characters and storyline managed to draw me in well and I could really sense what it was like in the situation. I was drawn into the story and the atmosphere of the book.
Les McFarlane
Apr 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a little stunner of a story! I came across this book in a charity shop. I liked the fact it was a hardback ( I know, a little quirk I have!) I was taken with the gorgeous cover and the unusual title.
This was written in a way that reminded me of the books I read in junior school. It relit my ten year old self's yen for adventure and for things completely different to all I've known.
The main character, Maia, sadly lost her parents to an accident and we find her receiving some news of her fut
Suzannah Seerden
Really enjoyed this book
Feb 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Re-read for the category "favorite book as a child". Now I realize this book is the reason I love books set in the Amazon.
Mar 25, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Susann by: Wendy
I enjoyed this through and through, and somewhere in the second half it sailed from a 3-star rating to a 4-star one. I think it’s because, by the mid-point, almost all the events that an adult reader would predict have happened, and from then on it’s all about seeing how everything plays out and, most important, seeing Maia in her element:
“There were girls at school who wanted to ride, and others who wanted to go on the stage, and there was a girl who had made a terrible fuss till she was allowe
Robbie Cheadle
Aug 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A delightful story of friendship and adventure by one of my favourite children's authors, Eva Ibbotson. Maia is an orphan and is a learner at a boarding school in London when she finds out the startling news that her legal guardian, a kindly and elderly lawyer, has found a relative of hers and that they want Maia to come and live with them. Wonderful news as the Carters have twin daughters just about Maia's age. The more anxiety producing side of this news is that the Carters live in Brazil alon ...more
Feb 02, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this when it was given to our Y6 children for their Literacy Work. It took me a while to get into the book but, eventually, I found it quite interesting. The characters were well portrayed and very typical of the 'class' system that was in evidence in Britain at that time. It also portrays the Victorian feeling that they ruled the world and other people needed to fit to their ideals.
The governess is almost like a 'Nanny McPhee' character, keeping an eye on the main character.
The book por
Jan 07, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I very much enjoyed this book. It's a good story with an engaging central character and plenty of incident. Maia has a lot to cope with: her parents have died and she must travel to the Amazon with a governess she does not know to live with distant relatives that she has never met. She is an adventurous person and approaches her new life with enthusiasm and spirit. But things do not turn out quite as she has hoped, and Maia is soon dealing with difficult people and an unexpected adventure.
The st
I took on the daunting task of reading Journey to the River Sea to a small group of preschoolers, mostly five-year-olds. They really enjoyed it, but boy oh boy was it a lot of work. I had to do a ton of on-the-spot editing and explaining and cropping. It's a long book and way too complex for them. I did not actually enjoy the book much myself, though. The plot is a bit strange and disjointed. The evil characters were so unabashedly evil. There was no attempt to color the "bad guys" with any huma ...more
Jun 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my favourite book by far. I remember the first time i saw it..i had won a competition when i was 11 and this was my prize. I remember looking at the cover and thinking OH and I isntantly thought it looked boring. But when i decided to have a go and read it, i was suprised at how much i was drawn into the story and i couldnt put it down. I really enjoyed it and was so happy i had won it afterall. Since then ive read and re-read it so many times. Just goes to show u should never judge a bo ...more
Jan 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I remember I took this book with me when I went to America and I read it about three times while I was there. I was so completely in love with it!
This book was just as enjoyable as The Great Ghost Rescue, and now I understand why I never discovered her when I was a kid, and in the target age range for these books -- she'd barely gotten started at that point. Her use of language is skillful and smooth, easy to read aloud like older children's classics, but the pacing and plotting don't have the slow spells that plague so many early-mid 20th century chapter books.

I couldn't get my kids interested in this one, so I read it for myself in a fi
Leah Swan
Feb 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this when I was younger and remember loving it, so wanted to re-read!
The story follows orphan Mia, as she is sent to the Amazon to live with distant relatives. Despite her initial excitement, she arrives to a house isolated from the jungle outside and is forced to spend time with the awful twins. She makes friends outside of her family, and ends up falling completely in love with the Amazon.

The book wasn't quite as incredible as I remembered, although I certainly understand why I did enjoy
Mar 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was a joy to re-read this novel by Eva Ibbotson. I grew very attached to the characters, especially the kind and intelligent protagonist Maia, and the stern but caring Ms. Minton. While it is a children's novel, reading it again as an adult it still captured my imagination and put me in high spirits. A beautiful and inspiring read.
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Eva Ibbotson (born Maria Charlotte Michelle Wiesner) was a British novelist specializing in romance and children's fantasy.

She was born in Vienna, Austria, in 1925. When Hitler came into power, her family moved to England. She attended Bedford College, graduating in 1945; Cambridge University from 1946-47; and the University of Durham, from which she graduated with a diploma in education in 1965.
“They were steaming out of the station before Maia asked, 'Was it books in the trunk?'
'It was books, admitted Miss Minton.
And Maia said, 'Good.”
“I would let her...have adventures. I would let her...choose her path. It would be was hard...but I would do it. Oh, not completely, of course. Some things have to go on. Cleaning one's teeth, arithmetic. But Maia fell in love with the Amazon. It happens. THe place was for her - and the people. Of course there was some danger, but there is danger everywhere. Two years ago, in this school, there was an outbreak of typhus, and three girls died. CHildren are knocked down and killed by horses every week, here in these streets--" She broke off, gathering her thoughts. "When she was traveling and exploring...and finding her songs, Maia wasn't just happy, she was...herself. I think something broke in Maia when her parents died, and out there it healed. Perhaps I'm mad--and the professor too-- but I think children must lead big lives...if it is in them to do so.” 16 likes
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