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A Place to Hang the Moon

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Set against the backdrop of World War II, Anna, Edmund, and William are evacuated from London to live in the countryside, bouncing from home to home in search of a permanent family. It is 1940 and Anna, 9, Edmund, 11, and William, 12, have just lost their grandmother. Unfortunately, she left no provision for their guardianship in her will. Her solicitor comes up with a Set against the backdrop of World War II, Anna, Edmund, and William are evacuated from London to live in the countryside, bouncing from home to home in search of a permanent family. It is 1940 and Anna, 9, Edmund, 11, and William, 12, have just lost their grandmother. Unfortunately, she left no provision for their guardianship in her will. Her solicitor comes up with a preposterous plan: he will arrange for the children to join a group of schoolchildren who are being evacuated to a village in the country, where they will live with families for the duration of the war. He also hopes that whoever takes the children on might end up willing to adopt them and become their new family--providing, of course, that the children can agree on the choice. Moving from one family to another, the children suffer the cruel trickery of foster brothers, the cold realities of outdoor toilets, and the hollowness of empty tummies. They seek comfort in the village lending library, whose kind librarian, Nora Muller, seems an excellent candidate--except that she has a German husband whose whereabouts are currently unknown. Nevertheless, Nora's cottage is a place of bedtime stories and fireplaces, of vegetable gardens and hot, milky tea. Most important, it's a place where someone thinks they all three hung the moon. Which is really all you need in a mom, if you think about it. Fans of The War That Saved My Life and other World War II fiction will find an instant classic in A Place to Hang the Moon.


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Set against the backdrop of World War II, Anna, Edmund, and William are evacuated from London to live in the countryside, bouncing from home to home in search of a permanent family. It is 1940 and Anna, 9, Edmund, 11, and William, 12, have just lost their grandmother. Unfortunately, she left no provision for their guardianship in her will. Her solicitor comes up with a Set against the backdrop of World War II, Anna, Edmund, and William are evacuated from London to live in the countryside, bouncing from home to home in search of a permanent family. It is 1940 and Anna, 9, Edmund, 11, and William, 12, have just lost their grandmother. Unfortunately, she left no provision for their guardianship in her will. Her solicitor comes up with a preposterous plan: he will arrange for the children to join a group of schoolchildren who are being evacuated to a village in the country, where they will live with families for the duration of the war. He also hopes that whoever takes the children on might end up willing to adopt them and become their new family--providing, of course, that the children can agree on the choice. Moving from one family to another, the children suffer the cruel trickery of foster brothers, the cold realities of outdoor toilets, and the hollowness of empty tummies. They seek comfort in the village lending library, whose kind librarian, Nora Muller, seems an excellent candidate--except that she has a German husband whose whereabouts are currently unknown. Nevertheless, Nora's cottage is a place of bedtime stories and fireplaces, of vegetable gardens and hot, milky tea. Most important, it's a place where someone thinks they all three hung the moon. Which is really all you need in a mom, if you think about it. Fans of The War That Saved My Life and other World War II fiction will find an instant classic in A Place to Hang the Moon.

30 review for A Place to Hang the Moon

  1. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    E ARC Provided by Netgalley Anna, Edmund, and William live in London at the start of WWII. Their parents have been dead for several years, and their grandmother has just passed away. They wish they could stay with Mrs. Collins, the housekeeper, but she is elderly and is going to live with her sister. Their solicitor arranges for them to be evacuated with a nearby school, and instructs them to tell no one that their grandmother is dead, and to try to locate a family who can adopt them, and therefo E ARC Provided by Netgalley Anna, Edmund, and William live in London at the start of WWII. Their parents have been dead for several years, and their grandmother has just passed away. They wish they could stay with Mrs. Collins, the housekeeper, but she is elderly and is going to live with her sister. Their solicitor arranges for them to be evacuated with a nearby school, and instructs them to tell no one that their grandmother is dead, and to try to locate a family who can adopt them, and therefore get access to their inheritance for their upkeep. The children, with their gas masks and one suit case each, board a train and are soon in the countryside. Because Anna is just 9, a woman with twin sons who are William's age offers to take in all of the children. The boys must put up with abuse from the twins, but the father is the local butcher, and the house is comfortable. The evacuees are sent to school every morning, in order to get them out of their foster family's hair, and are given lunch, although their ration books are turned over to the families. The children notice that there is a lending library, and are thrilled to be allowed to go. Each one has brought only one book from home, but soon they are investigating new stories and talking to Mrs. Müller, the librarian. Because her husband was from Germany, the townspeople are wary of her, and she is not allowed to take in evacuees. Unfortunately, she has not heard from her husband in three years, and fears for his safety. When the twins frame Edmund for graffiti in town, the children are moved to Mrs. Griffith's house. The young mother has three small children, and her husband is off fighting, so she has very little income. The children are given scant supplies, and winter becomes an exercise in survival. The children get lice (which Mrs. Müller helps them with), are constantly hungry, and are not cared for or loved at all. When the younger Griffiths tear up the children's personal books as well as their library ones to use as toilet paper, they flee the house. There is a Christmas pageant going on, and when Mrs. Müller realizes their plight, she takes them to her home after it is over. Edmund has a bad cold, but Mrs. Müller makes sure the children are warm, fed, and most importantly, books! She confronts the teachers in charge of the evacuees (one, Mrs. Warren, is very nice but leaves when her husband is killed, and Miss Carr is rather evil), and gets the three placed with her. The children revel in having care and, for the first time, love. Is this the family for which the children have been waiting? Strengths: If, like Anna, you grew up on a steady stream of orphan tales like A Little Princess and Anne of Green Gables, you will love this tale of evacuees in England during World War II. The writing moves the book ahead quickly; it wasn't until I finished that I realized it had started with a funeral. I usually hate this, but since Edmund was focused on filling his pockets with custard creams and iced buns, Anna was hiding beside a chair and reading, and William was trying to represent the children as the oldest and chafing at having to smile sadly, this was a great start. I don't have all that many books about evacuees in England, so this is a great topic to include, and it was also... ultimately cozy and very library friendly. Librarians and teachers will absolutely adore this, but it will also resonate with younger readers. Very much enjoyed this. It had a wonderful, classic feel to it. Weaknesses: This needed a dog. Why did Mrs. Müller not have a Cavalier King Charles spaniel to sit with her in the snug in front of the fire? What I really think: I'd love to know if Mrs. Müller was a homage to Bunting's 1995 Spying on Miss Muller! Bradley's The War That Saved My Life is popular in my library because an elementary teacher reads it to her class, so I am definitely buying a copy. This gave me the same range of feels that Edward's Mandy did-- first, the weird thrill of survival against the odds, then the relief of comfort when the children once again have warm socks and cocoa. I loved that Mrs. Müller benefited as much from having the children with her.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Evelina | AvalinahsBooks

    How I read this: Free ebook copy received through Edelweiss So this weekend, I finally read a couple middle grade books that broke my huge reading slump, and A Place to Hang the Moon was one of them. It was amazing – heartwarming, real, cozy and sweet. The pages simply melted under my fingers! The book immediately drew me in – it had a pleasant tone and felt natural, and I could instantly feel for the characters. The bit I loved the best was how the book instantly places you in cozy situations, a How I read this: Free ebook copy received through Edelweiss So this weekend, I finally read a couple middle grade books that broke my huge reading slump, and A Place to Hang the Moon was one of them. It was amazing – heartwarming, real, cozy and sweet. The pages simply melted under my fingers! The book immediately drew me in – it had a pleasant tone and felt natural, and I could instantly feel for the characters. The bit I loved the best was how the book instantly places you in cozy situations, and the love for reading the characters have. And the best part was that the characters simply come off the page – this is something that doesn't happen in a lot of middle grades, due to their faster pace and shorter stories. I can’t recommend it more – it’s a perfect book for any child, as well as any adult. I loved it! Here's my longer review in case you want my full thoughts on it: https://avalinahsbooks.space/a-place-... I thank the publisher for giving me a free copy of the ebook in exchange to my honest review. This has not affected my opinion. Book Blog | Bookstagram | Bookish Twitter

  3. 5 out of 5

    Steph

    I'm completely in love with this story and certainly Mrs. Müller, Anna, Edmund, and William. Absolutely love this historical fiction "light" which told me a beautiful story of finding family & home while bringing me back to the 1940's. Love this author, and love this book so very, very much. * * * * * “Guest bibliophiles are quite welcome.” “A librarian seemed a good sort of friend to have.” “The delightful thing is that talking about books actually IS my work.” "She knew she ought not to eavesdrop, I'm completely in love with this story and certainly Mrs. Müller, Anna, Edmund, and William. Absolutely love this historical fiction "light" which told me a beautiful story of finding family & home while bringing me back to the 1940's. Love this author, and love this book so very, very much. * * * * * “Guest bibliophiles are quite welcome.” “A librarian seemed a good sort of friend to have.” “The delightful thing is that talking about books actually IS my work.” "She knew she ought not to eavesdrop, but there is nothing so compelling as the sound of a whisper just within one's reach." "I really ought to send her a book instead. Though she's not much of a reader." She paused. "Evidence as to her character." "Mrs. Müller smiled a sort of smile they hadn't seen before. A smile that showed something like joy. Something like sorrow. Something like gratitude." "It seemed all the stories that had sat so long in Mrs. Müller's head, just waiting for someone to know them, came pouring out. Nothing scandalous, mind you- only the everyday things that don't find ears when one lives alone." "The name snug was fitting. Two chairs and a sofa, a faded ottoman bearing a knitted blanket, a glowing fireplace. Aside from those, it was all books. Shelves lined every available bit of wall, and more books made themselves comfortable on the floor, stacked on side tables, lined up between bookends on the mantel. What could have felt untidy felt instead as Mrs. Müller had sad. Friendly." " 'And thanks for the advice about dragons.' He stifled a yawn. 'I'll try to be more mindful of them.' 'Right,' she said. And I'll try to be less.' " "Anna might not have known what to say, but she knew what to do. Which is often the more important thing, as it turns out."

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lindsey (Bring My Books)

    When your favorite book of ALL TIME is The War That Saved My Life, a WWII Historical Fiction featuring two children trying to find a home during the uncertain times that war brings, any book with any similarity whatsoever automatically moves to the top of the list - which is exactly what happened with Kate Albus' A Place to Hang the Moon. In the tiniest of tiny tiny ways, loving and rereading TWTSML so many times impacted my full enjoyment of the wonderful middle grade book that is A Place to When your favorite book of ALL TIME is The War That Saved My Life, a WWII Historical Fiction featuring two children trying to find a home during the uncertain times that war brings, any book with any similarity whatsoever automatically moves to the top of the list - which is exactly what happened with Kate Albus' A Place to Hang the Moon. In the tiniest of tiny tiny ways, loving and rereading TWTSML so many times impacted my full enjoyment of the wonderful middle grade book that is A Place to Hang the Moon - at least in the beginning, when I was busy subconsciously comparing the two. Once I separated them out in my head, I was fully able to enjoy the ways that this book is such an excellent addition to the WWII Historical Fiction MG genre (and there were so many!!). I loved the relationship between the siblings, I loved the relationship between the siblings and Nora. I loved the relationships between the siblings and their solicitor (although it was somewhat ridiculous, and gave me A Series of Unfortunate Events vibes). Basically, I loved the relationships. This is a perfect book for so, so, so many readers. Definitely one I will find myself recommending over and over again! (And if you liked this book, I cannot (I simply CANNOT) recommend The War That Saved My Life highly enough! Both that and the sequel, The War I Finally Won, are all time favorites!) Content Warnings: (view spoiler)[Ratting (Killing Rats with Clubs/Boards for money) (hide spoiler)]

  5. 4 out of 5

    Darla

    All they want is a mother who thinks they hang the moon. For three orphans that is a tall order, especially in the midst of the Blitz. Their solicitor is at a loss. The deceased grandmother did not name a new guardian and there is no immediate family available. So, William, Edmund, and Anna take a chance on meeting someone as evacuees. They encounter prejudice, bullying, poverty, and despair. Now it is Christmas and they reach a pivotal moment at their billet. Your heart will break for these you All they want is a mother who thinks they hang the moon. For three orphans that is a tall order, especially in the midst of the Blitz. Their solicitor is at a loss. The deceased grandmother did not name a new guardian and there is no immediate family available. So, William, Edmund, and Anna take a chance on meeting someone as evacuees. They encounter prejudice, bullying, poverty, and despair. Now it is Christmas and they reach a pivotal moment at their billet. Your heart will break for these young people and the desperate circumstances they face. William is doing his best as the oldest brother to keep them together and plan a future for them. That is a heavy burden for a boy who is twelve, just turning thirteen. What do you think his birthday wish is? Will it come true? I loved the way the library provided refuge and books an escape. The librarian is also a beacon of hope and help. Includes a list of the books that the children enjoy throughout. Comparisons to 'The War That Saved My Life' are right on. Thank you to Margaret Ferguson Books and Edelweiss+ for a DRC in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Ben Gartner

    A Place to Hang the Moon is like a classic book that always has been, and I'm only discovering it now. Pitch-perfect character development, rich historical nuanced detail, and a story that, even though you sort of expect how it might turn out, you hold your breath hoping it really does turn out that way. I told someone that I thought the diction and tone were reminiscent of C.S. Lewis before I read the Acknowledgements and learned that Lewis was in fact an inspiration. Also hints of A.A. Milne a A Place to Hang the Moon is like a classic book that always has been, and I'm only discovering it now. Pitch-perfect character development, rich historical nuanced detail, and a story that, even though you sort of expect how it might turn out, you hold your breath hoping it really does turn out that way. I told someone that I thought the diction and tone were reminiscent of C.S. Lewis before I read the Acknowledgements and learned that Lewis was in fact an inspiration. Also hints of A.A. Milne and other good wholesome classics. A sort of Mary Poppins vibe. This is certainly one of those books where, after you read it, you feel hopeful and more optimistic about the good of which humans are capable, even (especially!) amid tragic circumstances. Kate Albus plays at the heartstrings like a virtuoso. There were many great lines, but here are a few of my favorite: “Hope and imagination...For children—above all other creatures—are naturally endowed with extraordinary capacities for both.” When entering a library: “...cool and reverent silence known only to places that house books—well, and perhaps artwork and religious artifacts.” And for obvious reasons, this one echoed: “...there are a lot of things that are unconventional these days, so we’ll all just need to make the best of it, won’t we?”

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kasee Bailey

    Oh wow. Oh wow. I loved every page of this book and it is promptly going onto my all-time-favorites list. It was so heartbreaking AND heartwarming and lovely and I will be recommending it to everyone I know. I cried, I laughed, I felt my heart bursting. The writing is INCREDIBLE. READ THIS BOOK!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Gina Johnson

    I really enjoyed this book and it’s surprisingly well written...especially for a book written last year! 4 stars instead of 5 only because I don’t feel the need to go out and buy it. I was very emotionally invested by the end.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Mimi

    The perfect mix of Matilda and A Series of Unfortunate Events I never knew I needed 🧡

  10. 4 out of 5

    Nicole Lesperance

    This is a delightful, cozy, atmospheric historical MG that reminds me of the books I used to adore as a kid. It's the kind of book you want to read with a warm blanket and a cup of tea. Anna, Edmund, and William go through so many struggles after they're sent away from London during WWII, but despite everything, they maintain their wonderful personalities and love for each other. Their search for someone to love them back and become their family is poignant and sometimes painful, but ultimately This is a delightful, cozy, atmospheric historical MG that reminds me of the books I used to adore as a kid. It's the kind of book you want to read with a warm blanket and a cup of tea. Anna, Edmund, and William go through so many struggles after they're sent away from London during WWII, but despite everything, they maintain their wonderful personalities and love for each other. Their search for someone to love them back and become their family is poignant and sometimes painful, but ultimately so satisfying. I especially loved all the historical details peppered throughout. It's clear the author did a ton of research, and this book provides a great way for kids to learn about an important time in history. This was such a sweet and beautiful read, and I can't wait to buy a copy for my own kids.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kathie

    Thank you to Edelweiss and the publisher for an eARC of this book. 5 STARS!! I readily admit that what I think about a book is directly proportional to my emotional reaction to it. In this case, A PLACE TO HANG THE MOON by Kate Albus gave me ALL the feels, and I can’t tell you how much I loved this book. Historical fiction is not my favorite genre, but this story about three siblings who are sent to the countryside in England during World War II grabbed me from the beginning and held on until the Thank you to Edelweiss and the publisher for an eARC of this book. 5 STARS!! I readily admit that what I think about a book is directly proportional to my emotional reaction to it. In this case, A PLACE TO HANG THE MOON by Kate Albus gave me ALL the feels, and I can’t tell you how much I loved this book. Historical fiction is not my favorite genre, but this story about three siblings who are sent to the countryside in England during World War II grabbed me from the beginning and held on until the very end. William, Edmund and Anna have lived with “the” grandmother in London since their parents died many years ago. When she dies and the children are left without a guardian, its decided to quietly send them to the countryside with a school group evacuating London, in the hopes that their billeting family might be willing to keep them forever. Their hopes are dashed when they end up with the Forrester family, whose two sons endeavor to make their stay extremely unpleasant. As one bad situation leads to another, and the kids must adjust to some terrible conditions, the one constant in their life is the local librarian, Mrs. Muller, and the welcoming atmosphere of the library. She is an outcast in the community because her missing husband is German, but when the children need her most, she is the one adult they can count on. I absolutely love the author’s writing. There is a hopefulness runs throughout the story, even when the children face extremely difficult circumstances. The relationships are the key for me; not only those between the three siblings (I love how devoted William is to his younger siblings, especially Anna), but each of their attachments to Mrs. Muller for different reasons. Each of their foster families gives the reader a look into the challenges facing the people in the community in the early part of the war without being a heavy story, and though the harsh realities are not ignored (the scene with the rats was pretty intense for me) they are not the central focus. It’s a heartwarming story that I am anxious to add to my collection so I can share this story with young readers.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Afoma (Reading Middle Grade)

    A Place to Hang the Moon is a heartwarming, immersive middle-grade debut. Fans of historical fiction will enjoy reading this story of three orphaned siblings set against the background of the British WWII evacuation. Come for the spellbinding storytelling and stay for the unforgettable characters, the love of libraries, and the buttered toast. I would highly recommend this book, period, but especially for fans of books about siblings, adoption and community. Read my full review on my blog. Many th A Place to Hang the Moon is a heartwarming, immersive middle-grade debut. Fans of historical fiction will enjoy reading this story of three orphaned siblings set against the background of the British WWII evacuation. Come for the spellbinding storytelling and stay for the unforgettable characters, the love of libraries, and the buttered toast. I would highly recommend this book, period, but especially for fans of books about siblings, adoption and community. Read my full review on my blog. Many thanks to the publisher for an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Megan

    This is a delightful middle grade book reminded me of the kind of books I adored as a kid. It is like a cup of tea on a chilly day.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kaela Noel

    This is such a special, cozy, heartwarming, beautifully written book about a trio of orphaned siblings evacuated from London to the countryside during World War Two. They struggle through various billets in difficult and grim circumstances, and sometimes disagree, while never losing sight of their love and loyalty for each other. I just loved it, and I feel fortunate I got to read it before its release, and I eagerly look forward to having the gorgeous hardcover on my bookshelf. In the days since This is such a special, cozy, heartwarming, beautifully written book about a trio of orphaned siblings evacuated from London to the countryside during World War Two. They struggle through various billets in difficult and grim circumstances, and sometimes disagree, while never losing sight of their love and loyalty for each other. I just loved it, and I feel fortunate I got to read it before its release, and I eagerly look forward to having the gorgeous hardcover on my bookshelf. In the days since finishing it, I find my mind drifting back to it and wishing there was already a sequel. Among the many things I adored about it are the way the love of books is woven into the plot, theme, and the whole sensibility and ambiance of the novel (but never in a heavy handed way). As a kid, I definitely identified as a "bookworm" and often felt alone in that identity (hence my childhood adoration of Matilda). I would have absolutely *cherished* this book if I'd been able to read it back then! Two of my favorite quotes from the book: - “Their pages spoke of the past, a reminder that the battered old world had whirred for a very long time indeed, and that even this latest buffeting would likely be withstood.” - “The librarian took this all in, standing by the fire and observing the children for a while, letting the silence be. Somehow, it didn’t feel awkward, the way silences often do. Perhaps librarians are more used to quiet than most.” Albus has crafted a classic family read-aloud, and a book that lovers of endearing, character-driven historical fiction will want to return to again and again. A PLACE TO HANG THE MOON feels like an instant classic to join the venerable lineage of books like Noel Streatfeild’s BALLET SHOES, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s A LITTLE PRINCESS, and even C.S. Lewis’s NARNIA (in spirit and sensibility, if not form). It’s just lovely. I highly recommend it for all kids and libraries. Do not miss this one!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Laura Gardner

    I loved this delightful historical novel! . . . This one gave me Penderwicks/Vanderbeekers family feels with War that Saved my Life historical vibes. Throw in a fabulous librarian character and I was SOLD. Would make a fabulous read aloud! . . . William, Edmund, and Anna are orphaned and need a guardian. They have an estate, but don't want to reveal that to prospective families. They join the wartime evacuation of children from London to the countryside in hopes their "preposterous plan" of finding a f I loved this delightful historical novel! . . . This one gave me Penderwicks/Vanderbeekers family feels with War that Saved my Life historical vibes. Throw in a fabulous librarian character and I was SOLD. Would make a fabulous read aloud! . . . William, Edmund, and Anna are orphaned and need a guardian. They have an estate, but don't want to reveal that to prospective families. They join the wartime evacuation of children from London to the countryside in hopes their "preposterous plan" of finding a forever family will work out. First they must contend with being stereotyped as "dirty vackies," however. Their only refuge is the country library where librarian Mrs. Muller (who is married to a missing German man -- is he a Nazi?) plies them with classic books. Can they find their forever home? . . . #middleschoollibrarian #middleschoollibrary #library #librarian #futurereadylibs #iteachlibrary #bookstagrammer #bookstagram #librariesofinstagram #librariansofinstagram #librariesfollowlibraries #librarylife #librarianlife #schoollibrarian #middlegrade #middlegradebooks #iteach #librarylove #booksbooksbooks #amreading #bibliophile #schoollibrariansrock #bookreview #bookrecommendation #igreads #malibrary #aplacetohangthemoon

  16. 5 out of 5

    Sydney Young

    This book made me feel so much!!! Loved it and want all my young friends to read it. What happens when three young siblings—doubly orphaned—are left without anyone to care for them? Especially on the eve of WWII? Well they go to the countryside, of course. They go with the idea, suggested by their solicitor, that perhaps they will find a forever family. Of course, that’s easier said than done. So you see the premise. When you crack open the book you will see the precocious characters of these chi This book made me feel so much!!! Loved it and want all my young friends to read it. What happens when three young siblings—doubly orphaned—are left without anyone to care for them? Especially on the eve of WWII? Well they go to the countryside, of course. They go with the idea, suggested by their solicitor, that perhaps they will find a forever family. Of course, that’s easier said than done. So you see the premise. When you crack open the book you will see the precocious characters of these children—as well as the interesting souls they meet along the way. Some tragic things happen, but these three are tough, and they have each other. Still, it would be nice to be cared for just once, wouldn’t it? I can’t say more without giving it away, but this book made my heart swell with the perfect resolution. Hence wanting to get it in the hands of all my little friends. Kate Albus has written a wonder debut novel! Also, somewhere I encountered the personality quiz for this book. Excellent quiz and I’m happy to report that I am Anna! ❤️📚

  17. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    Where do I even begin with my thoughts on this incredible book? I had heard so many good things in the lead up to this book and so I impatiently waited for my pre-ordered copy to arrive. It was just as amazing as I had heard, and maybe even a bit better! William, Edmund, and Anna were orphaned at a young age and have been raised by a combination of boarding schools, nannies, housekeepers and an unfriendly grandmother. When she dies in 1940's London they really have nowhere to go, so they are evac Where do I even begin with my thoughts on this incredible book? I had heard so many good things in the lead up to this book and so I impatiently waited for my pre-ordered copy to arrive. It was just as amazing as I had heard, and maybe even a bit better! William, Edmund, and Anna were orphaned at a young age and have been raised by a combination of boarding schools, nannies, housekeepers and an unfriendly grandmother. When she dies in 1940's London they really have nowhere to go, so they are evacuated along with local schoolchildren. They face a number of unpleasant situations along the way to trying to find their forever family. I loved how much the three kids love reading and there are a number of excellent quotes in the book about the joy and wonder of books. I read this book in one afternoon and look forward to recommending this book to anyone who will listen!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Alysa

    Following the death of their begrudging guardian/grandmother on the eve of Hitler's advance into England, William, Edmund and Anna are evacuated to the countryside both for their safety, and perhaps also to find a family to be adopted into. As they struggle through various billets, problems at school, and other hardships the children never lose their love for each other, for books, or for the belief that they will find a forever home. This book is a complete and utter delight! The voice is so lo Following the death of their begrudging guardian/grandmother on the eve of Hitler's advance into England, William, Edmund and Anna are evacuated to the countryside both for their safety, and perhaps also to find a family to be adopted into. As they struggle through various billets, problems at school, and other hardships the children never lose their love for each other, for books, or for the belief that they will find a forever home. This book is a complete and utter delight! The voice is so loving with just the slightest touch of good-hearted snark delivering some laugh out loud moments. This story is a wonderful warm hug - even when the children faced dire straights I knew we were in loving hands. This book settled into my imagination like a warm cup of cocoa, I didn't want to pick up another book for a couple of days because I didn't want to break the spell. I’m smitten!! Thank you to the publisher and Edelweiss+ for the e-arc.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sam Subity

    An utterly charming historical tale of three orphans forced to flee their home in London to the countryside during World War II. It's best to read this one wrapped up in a blanket in your favorite chair, perhaps with your stockinged feet stretched out toward a crackling fire, because that's the feeling you'll get from following William, Edmund and Anna as they search for a place they can finally call home. This is a debut you won't want to miss! An utterly charming historical tale of three orphans forced to flee their home in London to the countryside during World War II. It's best to read this one wrapped up in a blanket in your favorite chair, perhaps with your stockinged feet stretched out toward a crackling fire, because that's the feeling you'll get from following William, Edmund and Anna as they search for a place they can finally call home. This is a debut you won't want to miss!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Kristin Kowalk

    I haven’t cried while reading a children’s book since I was a child myself, but this beautiful book brought tears. The writing is charming and terribly cozy. A somewhat simple historical fiction story with a ton of heart and plenty of nods to bibliophiles. I hope Kate Albus writes much more; she is a kindred spirit.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Wendy MacKnight

    What a beautifully written book! I adored this story of three orphans evacuated from London during WWII and their journey to finding a forever family. This book reads like a timeless classic and children are going to adore William and Edmund and Anna so much! Highly recommend!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Carie

    A wonderful middle grade book set in London during WW II. The book has hints of Matilda with characters who steal your heart and has you hoping they find their way. The plot dragged a bit near the middle but then picked up the pace by the end. Highly recommend!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Binxie

    Loved this book! William, Edmund, and Anna are delightful characters and as a librarian, how could I not just love Mrs. Muller and her story. Set during WWII bringing the story of children being sent to the countryside for safety, this heartwarming story is just a delight.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    One of the loveliest books I’ve read in quite some time. It’s a warm blanket and a cup of cocoa on a cold winter day.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    Recommended from Read Aloud Revival instagram post, splurged and bought it since it's a new book. So far, glad I did. Easy fun middle grade novel to read when my mind starts racing with other things...krb 4/21/21 I thoroughly enjoyed this! Tried to take my time reading it, couldn't wait to have quiet time each day to get back to this book. Looking forward to hearing how my kiddos like it...krb 5/2/21 Recommended from Read Aloud Revival instagram post, splurged and bought it since it's a new book. So far, glad I did. Easy fun middle grade novel to read when my mind starts racing with other things...krb 4/21/21 I thoroughly enjoyed this! Tried to take my time reading it, couldn't wait to have quiet time each day to get back to this book. Looking forward to hearing how my kiddos like it...krb 5/2/21

  26. 4 out of 5

    Marli

    Thank you so much Elisabeth Marnik for pressing A Place to Hang the Moon by Kate Albus, it was perfect! I finished it in a day and hug hug hugged it!!! It has everything you need for great middle grade, a trio of orphans, including an ornery one named Edmund, a caring elderly housekeeper, a dead grandmother (trust me on this), a solicitor with an imagination, an evacuee train ride into the country, bullying, and poverty, and hope and love and redemption, and found family and so so many great book Thank you so much Elisabeth Marnik for pressing A Place to Hang the Moon by Kate Albus, it was perfect! I finished it in a day and hug hug hugged it!!! It has everything you need for great middle grade, a trio of orphans, including an ornery one named Edmund, a caring elderly housekeeper, a dead grandmother (trust me on this), a solicitor with an imagination, an evacuee train ride into the country, bullying, and poverty, and hope and love and redemption, and found family and so so many great books! Now I want to go adopt orphans!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jaime Berry

    Kate Albus’s debut is an utter delight. Set in World War II London, this book feels instantly timeless, and reads like a warm hug, reminding me of classic orphan tales I loved as a kid like Anne of Green Gables. After their grandmother passes away, William, Anna, and Edmund find themselves with no guardian and are evacuated along with a group of London’s school children to the countryside. Their hope is that one of the families they board with will want to adopt them. I absolutely loved every pa Kate Albus’s debut is an utter delight. Set in World War II London, this book feels instantly timeless, and reads like a warm hug, reminding me of classic orphan tales I loved as a kid like Anne of Green Gables. After their grandmother passes away, William, Anna, and Edmund find themselves with no guardian and are evacuated along with a group of London’s school children to the countryside. Their hope is that one of the families they board with will want to adopt them. I absolutely loved every page of this book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Alex Baugh

    First they lost their parents and were taken care of by their cold, distant grandmother. Now she's gone, too, it's June 1940 and there's war on. So it's decided that the orphaned but with an nice inheritance Pearce children - William, 12, Edmund, 11, Anna, 9 - would be evacuated from their home in London. The plan is that they will be sent to the countryside with a school they never attended, in the hope that they will find a proper family that wants them, but to not say anything about their inh First they lost their parents and were taken care of by their cold, distant grandmother. Now she's gone, too, it's June 1940 and there's war on. So it's decided that the orphaned but with an nice inheritance Pearce children - William, 12, Edmund, 11, Anna, 9 - would be evacuated from their home in London. The plan is that they will be sent to the countryside with a school they never attended, in the hope that they will find a proper family that wants them, but to not say anything about their inheritance to be sure that they are wanted and not their money. Naturally, the schoolmistress, Miss Carr, resents the three additions to her responsibilities and isn't exactly welcoming, especially when William insists the siblings not be separated and Edmund gets into trouble right off the bat. Arriving at their destination, the Pearce siblings are passed over until finally the Forresters, a family with two boys William's age, decides to pick them. At first, it seems like a good situation. Anna is given her own room and doted on by Mrs. Forrester, while William and Edmund share a room with Jack and Simon Forrester. But, it turns out that Jack and Simon resent the siblings, bullying William and Edmund at every chance and finally getting Edmund into serious trouble. Unfortunately, Mr. and Mrs. Forrester are convinced their sons can do no wrong. Luckily, there's a nice library in the village and soon William, Edmund and Anna begin to go there afternoons after school. All three are big readers, and they find a real welcome when they meet the librarian, Mrs. Müller. Mrs. Müller has her own problems - she is married to a German who went home before the war and there's been no word about him since. Of course, it is assumed by the villagers that he is now a Nazi. Naturally, they ostracize Mrs. Müller and she is considered an unsuitable billet for evacuees. Though life is pretty comfortable at the Forrester's, it soon becomes apparent that the billet isn't going to work out for the Pearce sibs and they are placed in a different home. Mrs. Griffith, whose husband of away fighting, is considerably poorer than the Forrester family and is the stressed out mother of four children. The Pearce siblings share an unheated room upstairs with one bed and a chamber pot, so they don't have to use the outhouse in the night. They are also expected to help out with the housework, help care for the children and surrender their ration cards and in return they get to be hungry and cold and get lice. Luckily, William, Edmund, and Anna still have the warm, cozy library to which they can escape. and the always welcoming Mrs. Müller. Plus, she always has the best book recommendations for them. But when they discover their books, including library books, being torn up to use in the outhouse, they storm out of the Griffith house, determined to not return, and head to the church for warmth and because they are to be in a Christmas pageant that night. Mrs. Müller, who has suspected things weren't going well for the Pearce siblings, takes them home with her that night. You may think that is the end of the story, but, no, it isn't. I just love a good, cozy middle grade novel with just enough tension and frustration to me keep reading and this novel certainly meets that criteria. And the scenes in the library are described with such comfortable coziness, even on a cold day, that I wished I could have joined them. William, Edmund, Anna, and Mrs. Müller are fleshed out with their distinct personalities and shared similarities. All four love to read, and there feels like a comfortable quiet sense of companionship in the library scenes that throughout the novel I kept thinking how sad it was they the Pearce children couldn't be billeted with Mrs. Müller. It felt like such a perfect fit compared to the Forresters and Mrs. Griffith. Luckily, the kids are their own best friends, and support each other no matter what. I like the way Albus has really captured some of the hardships people faced during WWII. Many evacuees were not welcomed in the towns and villages of the English countryside, and the words "filthy Vakies" graffitied onto a wall in this story pretty much sums it up. Some were only taken in for their ration cards, but still went hungry all the time. And then there is the suspicion many people had at that time towards anything and anyone German, here it is aimed at Mrs. Müller. The only thing missing was the words "fifth column." A Place to Hang the Moon is a wonderful choice for readers who like books about the kids who are faced with seemingly impossible challenges of the WWII home front. If you loved The War That Saved My Life as much as I did, this is definitely a book you will enjoy. This book is recommended for readers age 9+ This book was gratefully received from the publisher, Margaret Ferguson Books/Holiday House

  29. 4 out of 5

    Carly

    This is a lovely bit of middle grade fiction written by first time author Kate Albus. The story centers around Anna, Edmund, and William, three siblings in 1940s England. The children’s guardian passes away and there isn’t anyone who can take them in. And with England being on the brink of war, no one is looking to adopt, much less three children at once. So the game plan is to sneak the children into the countryside with all of the other children being evacuated out of the city to protect them This is a lovely bit of middle grade fiction written by first time author Kate Albus. The story centers around Anna, Edmund, and William, three siblings in 1940s England. The children’s guardian passes away and there isn’t anyone who can take them in. And with England being on the brink of war, no one is looking to adopt, much less three children at once. So the game plan is to sneak the children into the countryside with all of the other children being evacuated out of the city to protect them from bombings. The hope is that the family who takes them in will fall in love with them and maybe they would adopt them forever. This is written by someone who clearly loves books and libraries. The story really finds its flow once the children enter the library for the first time. Prior to that, it’s a little too try hard in the charm department, but once they step foot in the library, it becomes naturally charming and cozy a la Noel Streatfeild. And all of the book stuff is just lovely. (view spoiler)[Spoiler alert: It’s the librarian. If you’re an adult and have ever read anything ever, you know that the children will end up with the librarian. But it’s really about their journey to that point. The children live in two other households before they get to their librarian. (hide spoiler)] Generally, I quite liked this. If I was in the age group it was intended for, I would have adored it. But since I’m an adult, I’m going to review it as such. I learned so much about the process of evacuating kids for the war. For example, village families were paid to keep city children. And that evacuees suffered a lot of discrimination as well. And the process was run through their schools. It’s so, so sad. I kept thinking of the heartbreak of the parents who let their kids go to protect them and the kids missing their parents. I can’t get over the sacrifices that were made. And that people just took stranger children in. Yeah, okay, they were getting paid, but that’s still a big ask. I did think that the second woman that they were placed with was unfairly villanized by the author. Okay, so yeah, she was awful, but very little sympathy was given to the fact that here was a woman with four of her own kids under the age of five whose husband is off in the war. She doesn’t have a job, is getting a pittance from the army and is having to deal with rationing and food shortages. I imagine that she would be very stressed. She does get money for taking in three extra kids, but I doubt she sees a profit, she has to feed them etc. I get that the children would see her as a villain, but it really seemed that the author wanted us to see her that way too. It just seems like very little grace was given to a woman in a very hard situation. In the same vein, the boys are tasked with working at the yearly ratting at a local farm. Basically men and boys come from around the village to help the local farmer have a mass extermination event for the rats that are infesting his farm. As far as I can tell, this is an actual and realistic thing that happens and is also needed. And variations of ratting still happens to this day. This is portrayed realistically as far as I can tell and very harshly. It’s a hard scene to read even as an adult. Edmund and William have a really hard time with all of this. This makes sense, up til now, the boys lived fairly poshly in the city. This is completely out of their wheelhouse. But the author really wants us to view the whole event and everyone else who took part in it as if they were the men in A Clockwork Orange. Like it became a violent, gleeful rat-murdering frenzy. Maybe it was, maybe it wasn't. We never get another point of view, nor do they talk about it with anyone else. But either way, this is something that the village boys and men have been dealing with their entire lives. And it’s a necessary thing to do. It was just another thing that the author really wanted us to dislike overall. We also never really learn of the home lives of the other evacuees in the village. Are our leads the only ones who are having a rough go of it? I imagine not, but we never find out. Note for parents: As I mentioned earlier, the boys go ratting. This is not glossed over and is very rough. It is reality-based, but might be hard for some children to read. The children are told the tale of Lady Godiva and her naked horse back riding is brought up. And the kids have a giggle. In that same moment, a girl who has an unrequited crush on William, is sitting next to him during the Lady Godiva conversation and he notes being uncomfortable hearing about nakedness with this girl sitting next to him. There is a smidgen of an implication that Santa Claus isn’t real. TL;DR: Even though I had my issues with it, I did still enjoy it a lot. It’s very reminiscent of old school children’s lit.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Laurie Hnatiuk

    Thank you to Edelweiss+ and the publisher for an eARC of this book. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product. I had heard wonderful things about this book and honestly was hesitant to start to read it. Saving it for when I needed a book where I would become lost and immersed yet nervous that perhaps I would be the only one where the book didn't fit me, or it wasn't the right time. I was not disappointed, and I am confident to say that you will not be Thank you to Edelweiss+ and the publisher for an eARC of this book. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product. I had heard wonderful things about this book and honestly was hesitant to start to read it. Saving it for when I needed a book where I would become lost and immersed yet nervous that perhaps I would be the only one where the book didn't fit me, or it wasn't the right time. I was not disappointed, and I am confident to say that you will not be either! Set in WWII, during the London bombings and children were evacuated to neighbouring small towns, we meet three children; Anna, 9, Edmund, 11, and William, 12, who live with their grandmother. When their grandmother passes with no legal guardian named, their solicitor suggests that the three children join a group of children relocating to a small town. Upon arrival, families will take them in and look after them until it is safe to return to London. While they are there, perhaps the family that takes them in will become their forever family. Money is not going to be a problem, but again the solicitor advises that they remain silent about their financial circumstances. The elderly housekeeper will act as the contact person, so children do not appear to be orphans. Unfortunately, the children have many unpleasant encounters as they try to adjust to their new situation and end up in several homes, always looking for their forever family. Despite all the negatives, the three stick together, finding solace in the local library and the librarian, Mrs. Muller, ostracized by the community for reasons unknown yet, as they continue to look for their forever family. Once I started the book, I lost all track of time and read until I fell asleep while reading, and when I woke up, I had to finish but at the same time, did not want the story to end. I loved how all three children loved reading and books and found refugee from the unpleasantness they suffered in the library. I loved how the librarian, Mrs. Mueller took the three in, knew just what to do to make them feel at ease and comfortable and what book to hand them to read. It's like Mrs. Albus is a librarian at heart, as she developed such a unique relationship between each of the children and Mrs. Mueller. It is not just the relationship between the librarian and the children that make this story stand out. The relationship between the children themselves is open and honest, and one appreciates the realistic interactions between the three of them. Readers will identify with one of the children, whether it's the responsible William, independent Edmund or the perceptive Anna. The supporting characters are just as memorable, even those who, despite their faults and unkind acts, you learn to empathize with them. The emphasis on the learning and love of reading wasn't just about books. Mx. Albus inserts specific vocabulary that Anna collected and tries to use what she knows to define them. It becomes part of the story, and I looked forward to coming across the next word, in turn, building readers' vocabulary. For those interested in what the children read, all the books mentioned in the novel are in the back should readers want to read the books themselves. If you enjoyed Kimberly Brubaker Bradley's The War that Saved My Life and The War I Finally Won, then A Place to Hang the Moon is another book to savour and love. A Place to Hang the Moon is that feel-good story that everyone needs, reminding us that family, no matter how that may look, is what makes life worth living.

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