Center for Children's Literature Blog

Children’s Book Committee – August 2021 Pick

The Great Godden
Written by Meg Rosoff

An unnamed and gender-unrevealed narrator chronicles, in elegant prose, an English summer romance and resulting upheaval produced by a visit from two Americans.

Our Young Reviewer Says:

The Great Godden is about finding the unexpected in the expected. At first, it appears to be a typical summer romance. Subtle foreshadowings from the narrator reveal that it may not be what it seems. The author’s integration of love, manipulation, and adolescence into familial and romantic relationships through the lens of one character is extremely well done. The manipulation is hard to detect, but is evident throughout the novel. One can empathize with the emotions of the narrator, while also similarly being overcome by the manipulation themself. In this novel and in real life, it is difficult to make the distinction between light and dark. Light can be disguised in darkness, just as darkness can be disguised in light.”

–Nikki, 17, Rancho Santa Margarita, CA.

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See our Monthly Picks Archive 2012–2018, and our Monthly Picks 2019–present.