In brief;Children's books

5th November 1999 at 00:00
VOYAGE. By Adele Geras. Barn Owl pound;4.99.

Voyage is described as being suitable for teenagers. But such a good novel also merits consideration by older primary children, and is warmly recommended for that small circle of avid and sophisticated independent readers that exists in any primary school. Its story, set in 1904, about a group of Jewish refugees sailing to New York to escape the pogroms in Eastern Europe, would also provide a rich resource for guided reading.

This is one of the first titles from Barn Owl, a new imprint devoted to reprinting "endangered species" - books that have been unavailable for some time. Voyage is so well-written and well-executed, that the opportunity of once again being able to obtain this book, which dares to talk seriously to its audience about love, should not be missed. One character compares a mother's heart to a velvet pin-cushion with the pins stuck like tiny drops of rain. "All the happiness glitters on the surface, and all the sharp sorrows are buried so that no one can see them."

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