First Light is an intriguing tale of secrets, mystery and courage from the author of Newbery Award winner When You Reach Me.
Set in Greenland Rebecca Stead's debut novel tells the story of Thea, who lives in a world deep within a glacier, and Peter, who has arrived in Greenland to live on the ice while his father studies climate change.
Thea longs for her people to return to the sunlight, but her search for a way to the surface forces her to defy her powerful grandmother. Peter is troubled by strange visions that lead him to a crevice in the glacier. When their lives collide Thea and Peter find themselves unravelling a deep mystery.
'First Light is a fantastic fusion of science, intrigue, and gutsy kid characters who aren't afraid to uncover the truth. I loved the way Rebecca Stead captured the real-world magic of the icy arctic and melded it to a gripping story.' Kirsty Murray
Stead's debut novel rests on an intriguing premise that a group of people with unusual powers was forced to flee England generations ago to live peacefully below the ice in the "cold world" of Greenland. Fourteen-year-old Thea is a strong-willed resident of Gracehope, named after the woman who sacrificed her life to fulfill her dream of resettling her community safely under the glaciers. However, Thea, the last woman in Grace's direct bloodline, insists that her ancestor's intention was never to stay in Gracehope forever, but to rejoin life on the surface. Her life is forever changed the day she and her cousin find a secret tunnel to the world above and meet Peter, the 12-year old son of two scientists from New York who are ostensibly researching global warming. Peter is a reticent child who, like his mother, suffers from headaches and unusual ailments. After a long build-up, including a seemingly ancillary scientific puzzle about DNA, the story takes on a livelier pace as the central mystery unfolds the connection between Peter and Thea. It is a testament to the storytelling that the existence of this parallel world and the convergence of Peter and Thea's stories, told in separate chapters, are both credible and absorbing. Young readers will find this a journey worth taking. Ages 9-12.
The story is so beautifully written, it’s one of the best I’v read (coming from a 12 year old)!
I’v read a few of her other books and they never cease to amaze me.
The story is so captivating, I could read this book over and over and never get bored.
I recommend reading this book.