Lalani of the Distant Sea (Hardcover)
“A lush and mysterious fable, full of beauty, full of wonder.”—Rebecca Stead, Newbery Medal–winning author of When You Reach Me
Newbery Medalist Erin Entrada Kelly’s debut fantasy novel is a gorgeous, literary adventure about bravery, friendship, self-reliance, and the choice between accepting fate or forging your own path.
When Lalani Sarita’s mother falls ill with an incurable disease, Lalani embarks on a dangerous journey across the sea in the hope of safeguarding her own future. Inspired by Filipino folklore, this engrossing fantasy is for readers who loved Grace Lin’s Where the Mountain Meets the Moon and Disney’s Moana.
Life is difficult on the island of Sanlagita. To the west looms a vengeful mountain, one that threatens to collapse and bury the village at any moment. To the north, a dangerous fog swallows sailors who dare to venture out, looking for a more hospitable land. The women live in fear of the deadly mender’s disease, spread by the sharp needles they use to repair the men’s fishing nets. And what does the future hold for young girls? Mending and more mending.
When Lalani Sarita’s mother pricks her finger and falls ill, she gives twelve-year-old Lalani an impossible task—leave Sanlagita and find the riches of the legendary Mount Isa, which towers on an island to the north. But generations of men and boys have died on the same quest—how can a timid young girl survive the epic tests of the archipelago? And how will she manage without Veyda, her best friend?
Newbery Medalist and New York Times–bestselling author Erin Entrada Kelly’s debut fantasy novel is inspired by Filipino folklore and is an unforgettable coming-of-age story about friendship, courage, and identity.
Readers will love meeting Lalani, an ordinary girl on an extraordinary adventure; and Veyda, the best friend she leaves behind to ignite a revolution. Perfect for fans of Lauren Wolk’s Beyond the Bright Sea and Kelly Barnhill’s The Girl Who Drank the Moon.
About the Author
New York Times–bestselling author Erin Entrada Kelly was awarded the Newbery Medal for Hello, Universe. She grew up in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and now lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she earned an MFA from Rosemont College. Her short fiction has been nominated for the Philippines Free Press Literary Award for Short Fiction and the Pushcart Prize. Erin Entrada Kelly’s debut novel, Blackbird Fly, was a Kirkus Best Book, a School Library Journal Best Book, an ALSC Notable Book, and an Asian/Pacific American Honor Book. She is also the author of The Land of Forgotten Girls, winner of the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, and You Go First, a Spring 2018 Indie Next Pick. The author’s mother was the first in her family to immigrate to the United States from the Philippines and she now lives in Cebu.
“A lush and mysterious fable, full of beauty, full of wonder.”
— —Rebecca Stead, Newbery Medal-winning author of When You Reach Me
“With lyricism and elegance, Erin Entrada Kelly weaves a rich tale. Powerful and gripping.”
— Soman Chainani, author of The School for Good and Evil series