Will and the Tiny Magical Island of Guernsey
Category: Children’s Books
A young man named Will awoke one warm August morning in his family’s stone cottage on the island of Guernsey in the English Channel. The year was 1910 and Will had been waiting with much anticipation for this day. He was about to begin his journey across the Atlantic Ocean to a new life in America. His younger brother, George, would make a different decision. He would stay on the tiny island where he would raise his family and make a good life there. But this book is not just about two brothers who each take a different path.
It is about how the family remained connected; sharing their joys and troubles through endless letters. Even the strain of war could not sever the family ties. This book is about the strong family bond that lasted for more than a century despite the separation of many miles and several generations.
This is the first book written by Joyce Austin who grew up in Rhode Island hearing many stories of Guernsey from her father and grandfather. The book was prompted by the birth of another Guernsey “cousin” and Joyce’s wish to pass the family history along to the next generation. Joyce has visited Guernsey several times; the most recent trip being in May 2011 when she and her husband, son and daughter traveled there to celebrate the 100th anniversary of her grandfather’s immigration to the US. This book was many years in the making mostly because it was in competition with the other activities in Joyce’s life which include working as an oncology social worker, raising children, traveling, singing, riding horses, gardening, and taking photos. She continues to live in New Hampshire with her husband where they are working on enjoying their new status as “empty nesters”