Sarah's Stars

John Ibbitson. The Landing
Kids Can $17.95  ISBN 978-1-55453-234-6  160 pg.
Reviewed by Mena, Age 14

A violin. Alone. No, not alone.  There were strings, pulsing beneath, quietly.  The violin hovered, then ascended, like a gull surfing an updraft, trembling, suspended, then plunging down, into the guttural notes of the first fret.  Instinctively, Ben's left hand flexed, searching for the fingering.

After his father died, Ben lived at the Landing, his Uncle Henry's home. His uncle is bitter from having to live his whole life there, and Ben is afraid that he too will be stuck at the Landing his entire life. But ever since he was very small, Ben has dreamed of music, and playing his violin. He never truly believes that he could leave the Landing for his music. Then, Ben meets Ruth Chapman, a city woman who hires him to fix up her house. She plays records of violin music that enthral Ben, and she sees he has potential.  But will Ben follow the music to better places?

I found The Landing to be a story that really could have happened.  The characters are completely human, and their stories show the struggles of people who have no choice but to do what they can to scrape a living. I enjoyed the historical backdrop of this story, and the image of the city via the country style of living. 

I give The Landing four stars.


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