Lily’s Mountain

Hannah Moderow. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $16.99 (192p) ISBN 978-0-544-97800-3
In Moderow’s debut, indomitable 12-year-old Lily refuses to believe that her survivalist father has died on his latest climb up Mt. Denali, so she sets off with her teenage sister, Sophie, to recover him. The novel’s descriptions of local wildlife, flora, and ever-present mosquitoes cast the vivid Alaskan wilderness as its own character in the story. The two sisters, who have started to drift apart, come together as their journey takes them closer to the last place their father was seen alive, amid dangerous animals and dwindling food supplies. The novel’s pacing is as fast as one might expect in a race against time and the elements, and the momentum squares with Lily’s impulsiveness. However, confronted with the loss of her father, Lily and other family members don’t rest too long in grappling with their grief. Despite the brusque emotional tone, Lily’s conflicted relationship with her sister and the natural landscape she loves (“This land is alive—harsh and changing”) make this an engrossing portrait of a girl’s devotion to her father and how she makes the most of everything he taught her. Ages 10–12. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/18/2017
Release date: 11/14/2017
Genre: Children's
Open Ebook - 192 pages - 978-1-328-82903-0
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