The Stars at Oktober Bend

The Stars at Oktober Bend

Featured
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
694   0
Write Review
The Stars at Oktober Bend
Age Range
12+
Release Date
May 08, 2018
ISBN
978-0763692728
Buy This Book
      

Beautiful, lyrical prose, told in two voices, lifts up a poignant story of two traumatized teens who find each other in a small riverside town. i am the girl manny loves. the girl who writes our story in the book of flying. i am alice. Alice is fifteen, with hair as red as fire and skin as pale as bone. Something inside Alice is broken: she remembers words, but struggles to speak them. Still, Alice knows that words are for sharing, so she pins them to posters in tucked-away places: railway waiting rooms, fish-and-chips shops, quiet corners. Manny is sixteen, with a scar from shoulder to elbow. Something inside Manny is broken, too: he once was a child soldier, forced to do terrible, violent things. But in a new land with people who care for him, Manny explores the small town on foot. And in his pocket, he carries a poem he scooped up, a poem whose words he knows by heart. The relationship between Alice and Manny will be the beginning of love and healing. And for these two young souls, perhaps, that will be good enough.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0  (1)
Characters 
 
5.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
5.0  (1)
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0

A Beautiful Book

Alice Nightingale is broken. It's been three years since the horrific act that left her under the "spell of twelveness"--a head injury that doctors said would leave her forever twelve-years-old with (as Alice says) "messed up electrics" that cause her to have seizures when she's under too much stress. Alice's father is dead, and her mother left before Alice's injury to pursue her dream of being a musician. Alice and her younger brother, Joey, live in poverty with their grandmother in a condemned house on stilts near a river.

Alice's brokenness has paved the way for her gifts. Her voice doesn't work well, and although words start off making sense in her head, they don't come out of her mouth the way she plans. To put all of her thoughts out into the world, Alice writes little poems and leaves them around her town. Alice explains why she writes them: "saywords come/slow and slurred/sound stupid/but heartwords fly/from my pen."

Manny James has lost his family to the war in Sierra Leone, and he thinks that he is broken, too. Manny was forced to participate in the war as a child, and the memories of acts seen and committed haunt him--so he runs around the town that has adopted him in an effort to escape his thoughts. His wanderings lead him to Alice and her poems, and the two begin a friendship that could be the key to healing for both of them, although there's danger in their relationship, too.

Alice and Manny are two incredible souls, and their story is filled with pain and beauty. THE STARS AT OKTOBER BEND is told in both of their voices, though Alice's words are the ones that made me linger on each page. It took me a few chapters to fall into the rhythm of the book, but once I did, I had to deal with competing urges: I wanted to rush through to the end to see the outcome, but I wanted to pause after every one of Alice's descriptions and drink in her words.

Glenda Millard has written an unforgettable story of two teens dealing with pain that no one should have to endure. THE STARS AT OKTOBER BEND is more than a book; it's a gift to the reader, and I highly recommend it. My thanks to the publisher and YA Books Central for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.

Good Points
Simple but powerful poetry tied to the narrative
Unforgettable characters
Was this review helpful to you? 

User reviews

There are no user reviews for this listing.
Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Meet the Sky
From award-winning author McCall Hoyle comes a new young adult...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
A Touch of Gold
King Midas once had the ability to turn all he...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A Dog in King Arthur’s Court (Cavall in Camelot #1)
In Camelot, King Arthur’s dog encounters a world of danger...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Fray
She's been trained for battle but is she ready for...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Emergence (Kindred Ties: Book Two)
The fight for order has only just begun… Fletcher, Ariana...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
All Summer Long.jpg
A coming-of-age middle-grade graphic novel about summer and friendships, written...
 
0.0
 
4.0 (1)
They Say Blue
Caldecott and Printz Honor-winning illustrator Jillian Tamaki brings us a...
 
0.0
 
4.0 (1)
Lady Knight (Crystal Journals) Book 3
Shortlisted 2018-19 "Chocolate Lily Book Award"... ...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Pharaoh's Tomb (Crystal Journals) Book 2
So begins the next adventure for Susan Sinclair, the young...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The 13th Key
When the fate of Talisker relies on a solitary teenage...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Turnaway Girls
Delphernia Undersea wants to sing. But everyone on Blightsend knows...
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
The Looking Glass
GIRLS IN TROUBLE. That’s what...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Twilight of the Elves (The Adventurers Guild #2)
I should probably start at the beginning, Zed wrote, when...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Button War: A Tale of The Great War
Twelve-year-old Patryk knows little of the world beyond his...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Heretics Anonymous
Put an atheist in a strict Catholic school? Expect...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Storm-Wake
Moss has grown up on the strangest and most...
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

Awakening of Fire (Dragon Born, #1)
 
4.0
"Felicia never thought her life could be turned upside down by taking a trip to the mall. But when she's..."
The Gods of Men
 
5.0
"The story: A childhood tragedy forces Sable to flee her home, change her identity, and eke out a meager..."
Karina
 
4.0
"The story: Disfigured by a childhood accident, thirteen-year-old Karina Morgan has it tough. Labeled an outcast because of her..."
THE GHOST CHRONICLES
 
3.8
"\\Michael Andrews has died in a fiery car accident. He is sentenced to continually walk the earth. Things start to..."
Emerge: The Captive: (Book 3)
 
5.0
"Feedback Emerge: The Captive takes place between Awakening and Judgment through Sasha and Quinn’s point of view. At first..."
STUMPED
 
4.3
"Ozzy has everything a teenager could want, good grades, a hot girlfriend, and successful high school swimming career. When..."
 
5.0
"What happens when myth becomes a reality that is closer to home than you realize? That is the tale of..."
 
4.5
"I love the characters and their interactions. Not just a lot of action, but a true, indepth story...."
 
5.0
"What can I say? I, a 49 year old woman, got sucked into a YA story and absolutely LOVE..."
The Gods of Men
 
5.0
"There is nothing not to like in this book. The story: Sable hasn't had it easy. The daughter of..."
 
5.0
"In DARK FATES, there's a prophesy that keeps the humans and vampires separate out of fear. It is said that..."
Intoxic
 
5.0
"This is strong writing from an author on the rise. Gallion's prose is a breath of fresh air. There is..."
 
4.3
"I can't wait to see where the next book goes!"
Sneaking Out
 
3.8
" ‘Sneaking Out’ is the first installment in the ‘Chase’ series. The setting is an elite New England..."
Bleeding Hearts
 
3.0
"The story: Nancy Miller is a poor, illiterate teenage girl scrounging out a meager living in Edinburgh. On the..."
All-American Liars
 
3.8
"'All-American Liars' by Emily Kazmierski shines a light on the lies people tell themselves and others to help save face..."
 
4.0
"A short and fun read. The story: Megera is in danger of having to leave her private school when..."
This Summer
 
4.0
"A sweet romance highlighting the fragile hearts of youth. The story: Hadley is determined to have a good summer..."
Emerge: The Heir (Immortals of Indriell Book 4)
 
5.0
"A shining star in a great series. The story: Picking up years after the last time we saw Allie..."
Faded
 
5.0
"'Faded' by Melanie Hooyenga is the third installment in her 'Flicker Effect' series. It is not always true that a..."