Vivien Alcock The Mysterious Mr. Ross

ISBN 13: 9780440402824

The Mysterious Mr. Ross

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9780440402824: The Mysterious Mr. Ross

The mysterious Albert Ross, whom twelve-year-old Felicity saves from drowning on the dangerous seacoast where she lives, appears to be either an exotic world traveler or a fearsome liar, and he ultimately changes the lives of those who seek the truth about him.Felicity, a young girl yearning for adventure, rescues a lost young man, Mr. Ross, from the sea and, despite the suspicions of her friends and neighbors, finds her life forever altered

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From Publishers Weekly:

Felicity, 12, rescues a mysterious young man from drowning and brings him to her mother's boarding house. The young manwho calls himself Albert Rosscharms nearly everyone he meets. Soon local gossip has it that Mr. Ross is a famous explorer. Felicity, too, is enchanted by the stranger, but she can't help suspecting that he isn't quite what he appears to be. Felicity's best friend Bony is even more skeptical and sets out to prove that Ross is a fake. Bony's investigation gives rise to a new, mean-spirited set of rumors about Ross, and the townspeople turn against the young man they once welcomed. Literal truth is not entirely the point of this thoughtful, poetic depiction of small-town life, but it is frustrating that the linchpin of the storyRoss's identityis never revealed. Instead of giving him a spiritual or supernatural ambiguity that readers can live with, Alcock lets him remain a symbola mirror reflecting the desires of others. But through their encounter with him, Felicity, Bony and readers come to a greater understanding of themselves and a new awareness of the potentially destructive power of gossip. Ages 10-14.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 5-8 Twelve-year-old Felicity, whose only talent seems to be for breaking things, becomes a hero in her small seaside town when she rescues a young man from the ocean. The glow of her brief fame soon fades. Who is Albert Ross? Could he be a criminal? Did he make up his name from the chart of seabirds on the spare bedroom wall? To Felicity, who has read ``The Ancient Mariner'' in school, he begins to seem like a real albatross around her neck. Her friend Bony, setting out doggedly to unravel the mystery, soon has the whole town wondering. When Mr. Ross disappears into the sea mist at last like his namesake, they are no closer to the truth, but have learned something about themselves in the process. Absorbing in its very simplicity and small compass, this quiet but suspenseful story moves at a natural pace. The world of the little English town is lovingly delineated with touches of humor. Even the most minor characters come to life on the page. As in The Sylvia Game (Delacorte, 1984) Alcock uses a mystery to bring into relief everyday problems and relationships. Ruth S. Vose, San Francisco Public Library
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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