Echo by Pam Munoz Ryan

Tweens Read Thursdays

Pages- 592
Age Range- 10-14 years old 
Release Date- February 24, 2015 

The Story

"Your fate is not yet sealed. Even in the darkest night, a star will shine, a bell will chime, a path will be revealed." 

One day, a young German boy named Otto is playing hide and go seek with his friends. To impress a girl he likes he goes deep into a forest so no one will find him.  Otto does win the game of hide and go seek but he develops a new problem; he doesn't know how to get out of the forest & he becomes lost. Just when he is about to give up, Otto is saved by three sister princesses who are imprisoned by a witch's curse. The sisters agree to help Otto find his way out of the forest on one condition. The condition is that the sisters must be allowed to put their spirits into his harmonica. From there, Otto must agree to pass along the harmonica. In order to break the curse, they must save three souls on the brink of death. After Otto is saved, the harmonica connects three more characters to the harmonica. It follows: Friedich; who is living in 1933 Nazi Germany, Mike Flannery; who is an orphan protecting his brother in the Great Depression in 1935 USA, and finally, Ivy Lopez; who is dealing with her brother being away in the war while her Japanese neighbors are in a an concentration camp in 1942 USA. The kids must overcome their personal struggles, but it may have a bigger implications. Can they overcome their fate? 

My Review

So far, this is my FAVORITE book of 2015! Dare I say award worthy? 
 I loved the historical fiction portion of this book, but I also liked Munoz Ryan's ability to weave a fairy tale into it. I think that makes it more appealing to kids. I felt like it also gave an accurate description of WWII based on these accounts too. Even though the book is long, each character's story leaves off on a cliff hanger. Reader's will be sure to devour this read quickly to get to the end to see what happened to all of the characters. 

 I can't wait to share this with my tweens.  I have to give this book the five star treatment. 

Have you read Echo yet? What did you think? 


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