Skip to main content

The class book review: To the Edge of the World by Julia Green

Things don’t go to plan – for a refreshing change

News article image

Things don’t go to plan – for a refreshing change

To the Edge of the World

Julia Green

OUP Children’s

240 pages, £6.99, paperback

ISBN: 9780192758453


It’s the summer holidays and Jamie is helping his grandfather at his boatyard. He befriends Mara, who is supposedly educated at home. She loves sailing, hates the idea of school and plans to journey to the nearest islands off the Hebrides with her dog, Django. This doesn’t go to plan – and our story begins.

Although it is nothing like Kensuke’s Kingdom or Swallows and Amazons, To the Edge of the World will appeal to children who have read them. It was a refreshing change and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It is ideal for children in upper key stage 2. Green’s storytelling seems to improve book by book.

Robert Eves is assistant Sendco at St John’s Green Primary School, Colchester

Pupil reviews

Suspense, inspiration and boats

‘A lot of cliffhangers’

A boy called Jamie and a girl called Mara go on an adventure to an island called St Kilda. The atmosphere and mood changed quite a bit through the book.

My favourite part was when Jamie and Mara went to an island at the very start and Mara sailed away without him, because it made me think: will he stay there? Would he swim back?

This book is a bit like Kensuke’s Kingdom because of the sea and the island. This book is a bit better, though. You don’t normally see books involved with sea and people being stranded. Also, it has a lot of cliffhangers.

Overall, I loved it because it is a book with lots of suspense. Also, it tells you implicitly to follow your dreams and goals. It gives you lots of ideas to put in your writing as it is very descriptive.

Laia Hicks, Year 5


‘Tense and dramatic... with a cherry on top’

My favourite part of the book is when Mara and Jamie are on the island of St Kilda but Django had got lost. Thankfully, Jamie rescued him and made sure he wasn’t hurt. The story wouldn’t have had the cherry on top if Django didn’t survive.

To the Edge of the World was tense, dramatic and exciting. It was so nice seeing the friendship between the two children.

This book is a bit like Kensuke’s Kingdom by Michael Morpurgo, because the main characters are living on an island and they talk about the ocean, ships and boats. This book is different to most books in this area because it is not as predictable.

You should read this story because it is extremely inspiring to follow your goals and dreams. You can make friends with whoever you want, even if you do get judged.

By the end of the book, everyone is happy!

Sandra Wellahewage, Year 5


‘The sailing journey of a lifetime’

Jamie lives in the Outer Hebrides, is scared of the sea and won’t dare go in it. Mara, fearless, sails Stardust and was taken away from her dad when young. Django is her very energetic dog and will go everywhere with her.

Jamie goes down to the beach one day and finds a set of footprints in the sand which lead to a girl sailing a boat. Later, he meets Mara and she teaches him how to toughen his ways and eventually pulls him into a sailing journey of a lifetime.

I loved this book as it had a fantastic plot and different elements of different genres which really went well together. Probably the only scary part was when one of the characters went missing.

I would recommend this book to people from eight to 12 years of age who like survival stories.

Harrison Green, Year 5


‘Not that many scary or funny parts’

Jamie lived a very normal life and Mara’s life was very different, so it was interesting to see them together as main characters.

In the story it starts off with him meeting Mara, who does not go to school and spends most her time sailing her boat, Stardust. One day, they head off to an island alone for about three or four days before coming back home.

I loved this book. My favourite part was when they were trying to land the boat in the storm onto the island. There are not that many scary or funny parts, but it still kept my interest.

I would say this book is for children from nine to 14 years of age and recommend it because it’s a great book – with a few things about boats in it, too!

Finley Greenleaf, Year 5


If you or your class would like to write a review, please contact

Log in or register for FREE to continue reading.

It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you