Henry Holt and Co. (BYR), Hardcover, 9780805055825, 144pp.
Publication Date: October 12, 2010
When sixteen-year-old Brent Bishop inadvertently causes the death of a young woman, he is sent on an unusual journey of repentance, building wind toys across the land.
In his most ambitious novel to date, Newbery winner Paul Fleischman traces Brent's healing pilgrimage from Washington State to California, Florida, and Maine, and describes the many lives set into new motion by the ingenious creations Brent leaves behind.
Paul Fleischman is the master of multivoiced books for younger readers. In Whirligig he has created a novel about hidden connections that is itself a wonder of spinning hearts and grand surprises.
Paul Fleischman won the Newbery Medal for Joyful Noise, as well as a Newbery Honor for Graven Images. He lives with his wife and children in Pacific Grove, California.
“Complex and rewarding, this is a stellar addition to a consummate writer’s body of work.”—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“This is a cathartic story of redemption. Brent, filled with self-doubt, guilt, and a host of worries, is a character today's adolescents will recognize and agonize with. Fleischman's writing is filled with beautiful imagery, no more so than in the twirling arms of his whirligigs that remind readers that sustaining the human spirit in an imperfect world requires reaching out to others.”—Voice of Youth Advocates
“Though Whirligig has linear movement, it impresses readers more with its sense of interconnected spiraling. . . . There is enormous vitality and hopefulness expressed in this brief masterwork.”—School Library Journal
“In an intricately structured novel, Fleischman skillfully connects the stories of several people to the evolution of his main character. . . . Brent’s journey is an embracing and an edifying one.”—The Horn Book
“The story as a whole and the inner sense of self that Brent achieves through his experiences are mesmerizing. The language of the whirligig stories gleams and soars: a metaphor of movement, dance, laughter, and irrepressible life.”—Booklist