Synopses & Reviews
Two lives are bridged — and nothing will be the same.
Jess Aaron's greatest ambition is to be the fastest runner in the fifth grade. He's been practicing all summer and can't wait to see his classmates' faces when he beats them all. But on the first day of school, a new kid, a new girl, boldly crosses over to the boy's side of the playground and outruns everyone.
That's not a very promising beginning for a friendship, but Jess and Leslie Burke become inseparable. It doesn't matter to Jess that Leslie dresses funny, or that her family has a lot of money — but no TV. Leslie has imagination. Together, she and Jess create Terabithia, a magical kingdom in the woods where the two of them reign as king and queen, and their imaginations set the only limits. Then one morning a terrible tragedy occurs. Only when Jess is able to come to grips with this tragedy does he finally understand the strength and courage Leslie has given him.
In this classic novel, the friendship between young Jess and Leslie grows as they meet in Terabithia--their secret hiding place--and only ends with the tragic death of one of them. Set in contemporary rural America, "the story is one of remarkable richness and depth, beautifully written."--"The Horn Book." 1978 Newbery Medal winner; ALA Notable Children's Books of 1976-1980.
All summer, Jess pushed himself to be the fastest boy in the fifth grade, and when the year's first school-yard race was run, he was going to win. But his victory was stolen by a newcomer, by a girl, one who didn't even know enough to stay on the girls' side of the playground. Then, unexpectedly, Jess finds himself sticking up for Leslie, for the girl who breaks rules and wins races. The friendship between the two grows as Jess guides the city girl through the pitfalls of life in their small, rural town, and Leslie draws him into the world of imaginations world of magic and ceremony called Terabithia. Here, Leslie and Jess rule supreme among the oaks and evergreens, safe from the bullies and ridicule of the mundane world. Safe until an unforeseen tragedy forces Jess to reign in Terabithia alone, and both worlds are forever changed.
In this poignant, beautifully rendered novel, Katherine Paterson weaves a powerful story of friendship and courage.
Winner, 1978 Newbery Medal
Notable Children's Books of 1976?1980 (ALA)
Best Books of 1977 (SLJ)
1978 Lewis Carroll Shelf Award
Children's Books of 1977 (Library of Congress)
Le Grand Prix des Jeunes Lecteurs 1986 (France)
1981 Janusz Korczak Medal (Poland)
1986 Colorado Blue Spruce Young Adult Book Award
About the Author
Katherine Paterson was born in China, where she spent part of her childhood. After her education in China and the American South, she spent four years in Japan, the setting for her first three novels. Ms. Paterson has received numerous awards for her writing, including National Book Awards for The Master Puppeteer and The Great Gilly Hopkins, as well as Newbery Medals for Jacob Have I Loved and Bridge to Terabithia. Ms. Paterson lives with her husband in Vermont. They have four grown children.Donna Diamond has illustrated numerous children's books, including The Day of the Unicorn by Mollie Hunter and Riches by Esther Hautzig, as well as many book jackets. She lives in Riverdale, NY.