Lalani of the Distant Sea by Erin Entrada Kelly, illustrated by Lian Cho.
Greenwillow Books, HarperCollins, New York, 2019.
MG fantasy, 390 pages.
Lexile: 600L .
AR Level: 4.4 (worth 7.0 points) .
Sanlagita is a cursed isle, with harsh conditions and strict predetermined roles. The only festival left is Sailing Day, a time of fear as the strongest Sanlagitans are sent to certain death. But now a drought is changing things on the island for the worse.
This book reminded me of nothing so much as Grace Lin’s Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. Although the story and flavor are quite different, Kelly also uses the device of stories within a longer story to great effect. The stories are short and set off from the main text by the use of a different font and a decorative border around the margins.