Discovering that the gold-mining town of Walden is beginning to emerge as the water level of the reservoir drops, Brendan begins a hunt for treasure, but as he learns of Walden's dark past and the bad feeling felt by those in the town, he wonders if finding it was a good thing after all.
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Grade 6-8. This powerfully written, gripping novel examines the feelings of two boys who join together in a quest for hidden gold. Brendan has moved recently to Jacks Marsh, Australia, from England. An outcast among his peers, he seeks solitude at the nearby reservoir where he is free to draw the creatures he sees around him. There he discovers that the severe drought has caused the water level in the reservoir to recede; the sunken village of Walden, an old gold mining town, is therefore "rising." Bago is Brendan's chief tormentor. Yet, as the drought deepens and Bago and his father are forced to kill all but their breeding stock, Bago becomes less of a bully and more of a distraught boy. Thrown together in their search, the boys are discovered by two men who are also looking for the treasure. Murder, pursuit, and escape follow and draw the book to its moving and ironic conclusion. The author weaves into the narrative stories of other schoolboys and families that lived in Jacks Marsh. The tragedy surrounding the sunken town pervades all of their lives and irrevocably leads to the final outcome. Although the ending is not pat or happy, it is a satisfying one that brings together all of the threads of the story and leaves the boys wiser and better able to deal with the lives they have been given. Baillie uses third-person narrative to set the atmosphere, build the suspense, and lead readers into Brendan's thoughts and feelings. The author alternates these descriptive sections with realistic dialogue that moves the action along quickly and dramatically.?Wendy D. Caldiero, New York Public Library
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Gr. 5^-7. The new kid in an isolated Australian community parched by drought, Brendan feels unwelcome. After the school yard bully pummels him, Brendan takes off on his bicycle and finds Walden, a ghost town gradually rising from the bed of a reservoir as the water level falls. Old tales of Walden's hidden treasure lead to violence and even murder in the last scene, when friends become enemies, enemies become friends, and past meets present in a series of alarming discoveries and confrontations. This Australian novel starts off in a slow and understated manner. Readers who like things clearly spelled out in plain (American) English may lose patience, but those who persevere will find the final scenes as exciting as they come. Carolyn Phelan
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Book Description Puffin, Australia, 1997. Medium Trade Paperback. Book Condition: Good. 168 pages. Edgewear and creasing to covers. Lightly tanned pages. Previous owner's signature in ink. Multiple copies of this title available. Quantity Available: 3. Category: Children & Young Adult; Teenage Fiction; ISBN: 0140381473. ISBN/EAN: 9780140381474. Inventory No: 11050979. The photo of this book is of the actual book for sale. Bookseller Inventory # 11050979
Book Description Penguin, Australia, 1997. Medium Trade Paperback. Book Condition: Very Good. Reprint. 168 pages. Covers have no creasing. Corners of covers are lightly bumped. Spine is uncreased. Pages are reasonably tanned. Quantity Available: 1. Category: Children & Young Adult; Teenage Fiction; ISBN: 0140381473. ISBN/EAN: 9780140381474. Inventory No: 16090316. The photo of this book is of the actual book for sale. Bookseller Inventory # 16090316
Book Description Puffin Books, Ringwood, 1997. Soft Cover. Book Condition: VG. Reprint. 8vo. original printed paper wraps (sealed on plastic covering, creased, prev. owner's name inside upper wrap, a few marks); pp. [vi (last blank)], 168, [6 (advts.)],with illustrations. A very good copy. Bookseller Inventory # 011551
Book Description Penguin Books, Australia, 1997. Softcover. Book Condition: Very Good +. 2nd Impression. 168pp. Book clean, square. Spine firm. Leaves clean. Art-illustrated (Mark Sofilas) card wrapper mildly indented. "Something strange is happening outside the dusty town of Jacks Marsh, but Brendon seems to be the only one to have noticed. For years the mysteries of Walden have remained unsolved - mysteries of the goldrush, of Thunderbolt the bushranger. But Walden is coming back - and some people will stop at nothing to unearth its secrets . . . " Book weight approx. 180g. Postage charge will be reduced as this item will post under 500g. packed weight. Bookseller Inventory # 007361
Book Description Puffin, 1997. Paperback. Book Condition: Used; Good. Bookseller Inventory # 1697297