Kyle’s Island by Sally Derby

Kyle's IslandThirteen -year-old Kyle and his family always spend the summer at their cottage on a lake in Wisconsin. This year they are going to the cottage but it is different. Kyle’s grandmother has died and Kyle’s father has moved out so he won’t be coming with them. Kyle loves the cabin and is shocked to find out that his mother is planning on selling it in order to add to the college fund for the children. He is very resentful and is very angry with his father. He figures that if his father hadn’t moved out they could still afford the cabin. He decides that with his sisters’ help, they can earn enough to pay the taxes and keep the cabin. He digs and sells earthworms to earn money and then takes a job rowing a neighbor to fishing spots on the lake on most mornings. This is a book about family, about life changes, and about accepting people in spite of their faults. It is also a wonderful evocation of summer vacation at a rustic cottage with family in the seventies – no t.v. and no bathroom, but lots of family time, card games, soccer games, swimming, reading, and fishing.

Posted by: Fran

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1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Sally Derby said,

    Thanks for the perceptive review, Fran. I know this book doesn’t offer the excitement of some of today’s more “edgy” middlegrade novels. Still,I see it making its quiet way into the libraries of some of the more thoughtful young readers, and they are the ones I was writing for. I wish more kids could have vacations like Kyle’s–and have their own mysterious island to explore.


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