With the memorable characters and plot twists she brings to her best-selling fantasies, acclaimed author Eva Ibbotson has written a hair-raising novel, set in turn-of-the-last-century Brazil.
Accompanied by Miss Minton, a fierce-looking, no-nonsense governess, Maia, a young orphan, sets off for the wilderness of the Amazon, expecting curtains of orchids, brightly colored macaws, and a loving family. But what she finds is an evil-tempered aunt and uncle and their spoiled daughters. It is only when she is swept up in a mystery involving a young Indian boy, a homesick child actor, and a missing inheritance that Maia lands in the middle of the Amazon adventure she’s dreamed of. Readers of every generation will treasure Ibbotson’s lush historical adventure that harkens back to the beloved classics of Frances Hodgson Burnett and Louisa May Alcott.
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Adventure lovers will devour this one and wish that it would continue. (School Library Journal, starred review)
About Eva Ibbotson
Eva Ibbotson, born Maria Charlotte Michelle Wiesner (21 January 1925 – 20 October 2010), was an Austrian-born British novelist, known for her children’s books. Some of her novels for adults have been successfully reissued for the young adult market in… More about Eva Ibbotson
1. Do you have any writing rituals…?
I can write anywhere if I have to because I still use a pen and paper, but when I am at home I go to the old carved desk I inherited from my mother who was a writer too, and told some fantastic stories. The morning is best for ideas, and I have to be wearing warm clothes because when I am thinking hard I get cold. And I have to have a waste paper basket handy for all the pages that have gone wrong.
2. Who do you share your writing with first?
I don’t really share my work until it is published, I feel too uncomfortable about unfinished work.
3. When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
I don’t think I ever knew, it just happened. One day I wrote `author’ in my passport and that was that.
4. What were you doing when you found out that your first book was accepted for publication?
Cooking supper for my husband and children. My agent phoned and I shouted and we all danced about, except my husband who saw to it that the sauce did not burn.
5. What did you treat yourself to when you received your first advance check?
My first money as a writer came from a short story in a magazine. It was a very small sum, and I bought Mars Bars for everybody in the family.
6. What was the first book you remember reading, or being read to you?
I don’t remember the name of my first book, but I know it had a picture of very bright berries, green and red in a forest- and people lived inside the berries.… Perhaps that’s where my passion for forests comes from!
7. Do you read reviews of your own work?
Yes, when I am sent them, but I don’t go out and look.
8. What’s the best question a teen has ever asked you about your writing?
I don’t know what the best question is, but by far the most common is `Where do you get your ideas from?’ – and the answer to that is very difficult (and therefore interesting).
9. What are you reading right now?
The Wizard of Earthsea, by Ursula Le Guin.
10. Susan (your editor) tells me Journey to the River Sea is a book you’ve wanted to write for years. How did the idea first come to you?
Journey to the River Sea was written quite quickly but it spent years and years inside my head. It started with my hearing about this fabled opera house a thousand miles from the mouth of the Amazon and I thought it was one of the strangest things I had ever heard – I meant to go there and see for myself but then I realised it would mean going back into the past because everything is quite different there now. So I went on reading and dreaming and researching and then one day, I picked up my pen to start a new book about witches and ghosts and found I had started to write an adventure story set in the jungle.
Published by Puffin Books Oct 13, 2003| 304 Pages| 5-1/16 x 7-3/4| Middle Grade (8-12)| ISBN 9780142501849