The Moorchild

Written by: Eloise Jarvis McGraw

The Moorchild Book Cover
Half moorfolk and half human, and unable to shape-shift or disappear at will, Moql threatens the safety of the Band. So the Folk banish her and send her to live among humans as a changeling. Named Saaski by the couple for whose real baby she was swapped, she grows up taunted and feared by the villagers for being different, and is comfortable only on the moor, playing strange music on her bagpipes.  

As Saaski grows up, memories from her forgotten past with the Folks slowly emerge. But so do emotions from her human side, and she begins to realizethe terrible wrong the Folk have done to the humans she calls Da and Mumma. She is determined to restore their child to them, even if it means a dangerous return to the world that has already rejected her once.
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The Moorchild Reviews

Katrina Zartman
$0.99 wasn’t too much to spend to see what is winning awards in children’s literature, though.

I enjoyed learning about The Folk (fairies, pixies, however you would like to categorize them). I wouldn’t know if the information is historically accurate or just made up by this author. It was interesting to learn about bee hives and about the medicinal use of herbs. I also gained a better understanding of how a set of bagpipes works.

Moral tone? The author doesn’t punish the main character for her fau $0.99 wasn’t too much to spend to see what is winning awards in children’s literature, though.

I enjoyed learning about The Folk (fairies, pixies, however you would like to categorize them). I wouldn’t know if the information is historically accurate or just made up by this author. It was interesting to learn about bee hives and about the medicinal use of herbs. I also gained a better understanding of how a set of bagpipes works.

Moral tone? The author doesn’t punish the main character for her faults. It isn’t completely clear that the girl- changeling is wrong in her disobedience. The explanation of the changeling’s parentage was written in such a way that I don’t think a child would pick up on the immorality of the union between her human father and Folk Fairie mother.

Quick read. Enjoyable, but not destined to become a classic.
Shelece
When I was a little girl, one of my teachers had this in her classroom. I picked it up to read during our reading time, and I made it about halfway through before the school year ended. For years, it remained a fond memory, and I wondered how it ended. Every so often I would search for it at the local library with no luck. But then one day, my library purchased the Kindle edition.... and now finally I finished the book!

The beginning of the book is quite charming. This is a different take on the When I was a little girl, one of my teachers had this in her classroom. I picked it up to read during our reading time, and I made it about halfway through before the school year ended. For years, it remained a fond memory, and I wondered how it ended. Every so often I would search for it at the local library with no luck. But then one day, my library purchased the Kindle edition.... and now finally I finished the book!

The beginning of the book is quite charming. This is a different take on the fairy changeling myth--Saaki was born to a fae mother and raised with the fae, until in her young childhood, her lack of powers reveal that she is half human. That means that she is no longer welcome to live with their kind. She is swapped out for a human baby (who becomes a slave to the fae), and her body is changed back into a baby form so she can grow up and experience a human life. Slowly her memories of her first childhood fade.

But life isn't much easier as a human child. Just as she didn't fit in with the fae children, she doesn't fit in with the human children either. Fortunately, Saaki is blessed with loving parents. One of my favorite subplots is how she wins over her grandmother, despite the woman's knowledge that she is a changeling. And of course she befriends a local goat herder boy.

That's as far as I got in my first read. I have to admit... I thought the beginning of the story was stronger than the end. I got very invested in Saaki's plight, and in her close relationships with her loved ones, despite her challenges. (view spoiler)[But when Saaki is eleven years old, the truth finally comes to light that she is fae. She regains her memories. The villagers are appalled, of course, and want to kill her. Little Saaki realizes she can't stay here anymore. In a final burst of bravery, she breaks into the fairy mound and frees her parents' biological daughter. Then she runs off with the little goat herder boy, never to see her family again.

That gutted me. The author does a great job of developing Saaki's relationship with her parents and her grandmother. They have challenges in their relationships, but they work through them and grow closer. Then all of a sudden... she loses them forever. This is a child they have raised for eleven years. Wouldn't they do more to protect her? Why couldn't they leave that village for a more friendly place and raise their two daughters together?

I mean, okay, yes, there would be deep issues to work through when you find out your child is an otherworldly creature and your actual baby was stolen away, but.... even so, when you raise a child for eleven years, how can you let them go so easily? Poor Saaki. She is much too young to be out on her own. (hide spoiler)]
Mumtoad
Reading this book as an adult is a very different experience than reading it as a child. It has the remarkable ability to have its purpose and meaning expand with age, so that the same words you read in youth take on far more depth when grown. This book could just be a funny, odd, somewhat confusing forray into scottish folklore, but I found it bringing tears to my eyes.
This is the quality I look for when going from 4 stars to 5 - the ability for words to deepen with time. Eloise Jarvis McGraw Reading this book as an adult is a very different experience than reading it as a child. It has the remarkable ability to have its purpose and meaning expand with age, so that the same words you read in youth take on far more depth when grown. This book could just be a funny, odd, somewhat confusing forray into scottish folklore, but I found it bringing tears to my eyes.
This is the quality I look for when going from 4 stars to 5 - the ability for words to deepen with time. Eloise Jarvis McGraw has been my favorite since a young girl when I first read "Moccasin Trail", and I am discovering her again with "Moorchild". She is a fantastic historian, and does her research into the past. She writes clearly, with just enough description to put you into the environment without distracting from the point. Whether child or adult, this is a book to add to your shelves.
Derailed :: Kabuki, Vol. 1: Circle of Blood :: The Unknown Shore :: The Reverse of the Medal :: The Prophet of Yonwood
Elizabeth Tharp
I found The Moorchild an engaging and easy read. As someone who loves the stories of the Faerie and the Little People, The Moorchild offered me a refreshing dip into faerie lore. The plot was well-written and the characters were very sympathetic. Both the style and the tone reminded me of faerie lore volumes I used to check out at the library, increasing the feelings of nostalgia. On the whole, The Moorchild is an enjoyable read, especially for people who love Faerie lore and stories of the Lit I found The Moorchild an engaging and easy read. As someone who loves the stories of the Faerie and the Little People, The Moorchild offered me a refreshing dip into faerie lore. The plot was well-written and the characters were very sympathetic. Both the style and the tone reminded me of faerie lore volumes I used to check out at the library, increasing the feelings of nostalgia. On the whole, The Moorchild is an enjoyable read, especially for people who love Faerie lore and stories of the Little People.
M
The Moorchild I have read several times through my life, and each time it means more to me. I have never felt like a person who belonged, and so the story of a literal changeling appealed to me. Yet there's even more to this story than belonging, and learning to find your place-- it's magical in a whole different way.

Not a lot of books hold up to the test of time, but this one does. A favorite for the ages, and one I frequently return to.
Holli
I saw this recommended repeatedly as a good changeling novel and was not disappointed. The prose is lovely and the characters rich. The world is small and intimate, the story of one village and one child and her family (both Folk and human). I cried more than once. It's the kind of story I want to share with little kids I know.
Michael Fitzgerald
Some parts of the story seemed four stars, but I felt the ending was weak. I liked the characters and the setting, but for too much of the time, the reader knows everything but the characters don't, so there is little suspense and not much emotion when the secret is revealed.

I absolutely love the cover illustration, done by McGraw herself. It reminds me of the work of Lois Lenski.
Alex
I have to admit, I don't remember much about the plot of this book, as I read it as a child and I'm now in my twenties, but what I do remember is the overwhelming sense of comfort this book brought me. As someone who always felt different growing up, I loved this book. I read it multiple times in elementary school and it has a special place in my heart.
Meepspeeps
This is a good fairy tale about a child who feels she doesn't belong in either world she's experienced. I can see where kids who feel they don't belong or are somehow outcasts can relate to the main character. I recommend it to third graders and above.
Raphael Chan
I really liked this book because the plot was good, and there were many exciting parts, and a few scary ones. It was also well-written. I kind of feel sorry for Saaski because she was always taunted and hurt by the other villagers, and in the end they even nearly killed her!
Callie
beloved childhood favorite of mine that always transports me and and makes me feel at home in the world it creates
Mandy
This is a good book to make you think about how you see and treat others who may be different than you.
Laura
Meh. But I generally don’t like fantasy.
Alison Stegert
A haunting, beautiful story that will resonate with anyone who feels like an outsider.
Ryan Dash
Too slow, and too long for what boils down to a fairly simple plot. The climax and ending, at least, were moderately satisfying.
Amelmag
Eloise Jarvis McGraw was probably my favorite author growing up -- or at least the author responsible for many of my favorite childhood texts: books like Mara, Daughter of the Nile (the most romantic book I'd ever read) and Moccasin Trail (a book that stirred my imagination deeply, tapping as it did into the experience of growing up caught between peoples, values, and worlds). When I discovered, years later, that McGraw had another book, one I'd never read, The Moorchild immediately made it onto Eloise Jarvis McGraw was probably my favorite author growing up -- or at least the author responsible for many of my favorite childhood texts: books like Mara, Daughter of the Nile (the most romantic book I'd ever read) and Moccasin Trail (a book that stirred my imagination deeply, tapping as it did into the experience of growing up caught between peoples, values, and worlds). When I discovered, years later, that McGraw had another book, one I'd never read, The Moorchild immediately made it onto my "To Read" list. And this month, camping in the Aberdares, I finally made it around to reading it.

(view spoiler)[A fairytale, and a delightful read, though I'm left a little uncomfortable with the relationship between Saaski and her human "parents." The text seems to imply a far too simple understanding of what creates family or constitutes parenthood -- what makes someone someone's child. Saaski lives with her human family for years and years, and it seems dubious to me that the label "changeling" could so seemingly quickly, and painlessly, dissolve those bonds. Certainly there is a sense of sorrow and loss, but it is not the sorrow, not the loss, that accompanies the farewell of parent and child. The answer seems to be, 'but Saaski is not their child,' but is that really fair? And even if her moorfolk blood has kept her, in part, from truly experiencing what humans call "love," does that justify her parents' detachment? I don't think so. For love is not something that is given only to the degree that it is reciprocated -- especially not to one's children.

Saaski is too "different," ultimately, to be fully accepted, fully loved, by the family that raised her -- and there is a sense that her departure is accompanied, not just with a sense of loss, but with relief. This bothers me. Deeply. (hide spoiler)]
Blythe
Found a secondhand copy of this book and was intrigued so decided to spend the fifty cents or so and give it a try. I am so glad I did! I was delighted by Moql/Saaski, the main character, and my heart was touched by the author’s dedication to anyone who has ever felt that they don’t fit in. Though a children’s book, it delved into topics like doing the right thing when it’s hard, sacrifice, and the power of love, all woven throughout this heartfelt story of an unwilling changeling who comes to l Found a secondhand copy of this book and was intrigued so decided to spend the fifty cents or so and give it a try. I am so glad I did! I was delighted by Moql/Saaski, the main character, and my heart was touched by the author’s dedication to anyone who has ever felt that they don’t fit in. Though a children’s book, it delved into topics like doing the right thing when it’s hard, sacrifice, and the power of love, all woven throughout this heartfelt story of an unwilling changeling who comes to love her human family enough to leave them. A bittersweet ending. Definitely worth the read!
Tasia
This was fantastic. Anyone with an interest in Fae lore should find something worth reading here, but there's also a very honest examination of human nature. Typically, people fear and drive out what they don't understand, and their prejudice can't be simply undone by a few kindnesses. It should be noted, though, that if you're looking for something harrowing, you won't get anything like that until the very end. Moql/Saaski's story is largely told through her everyday existence. The village's ig This was fantastic. Anyone with an interest in Fae lore should find something worth reading here, but there's also a very honest examination of human nature. Typically, people fear and drive out what they don't understand, and their prejudice can't be simply undone by a few kindnesses. It should be noted, though, that if you're looking for something harrowing, you won't get anything like that until the very end. Moql/Saaski's story is largely told through her everyday existence. The village's ignorance and fear of her stems from their lifestyle... which is very isolated, rooted in routine, and with successes/failures hanging on a thread. Keep all that in mind, and you'll see why a strange child could throw everyone into a tizzy.

Also keep in mind that large shows of magic are too flashy for this kind of story. When everyone knows everyone, is watching everyone, the real struggle lies within the seemingly mundane, day-to-day existence. Being normal when you're simply not-- that's the harshest struggle.

Poor Moql/Saaski belongs neither here nor there, but eventually finds a way to belong with someone else. Though her future is uncertain, she'll have to make her own way, whatever it may be. Thankfully she has the opportunity to set things right before the end.
I think the only unbelievable part was how the village seemingly forgets about her as time goes on, though whether that's because they're shallow people or because of some kind of magic, I can't be sure of. She was there for a little over 10 years! Don't tell me she's easily forgotten.

Regardless, it's such a well-crafted story that I'd recommend this to anyone who wants a good Folk read, needs something for the classroom, or wants to give their child a high-quality story.
Mara S.
This thing sat on our bookshelf in middle school, and I can't even count the number of times I pushed it aside while looking for new stuff to read. It was written by the same author as my all-time favorite book, Mara Daughter of the Nile, and I always meant to pick it up...but somehow I never got around to it. Well, 15 years later, I found it at my local library.

Eloise McGraw's writing career spanned nearly 50 years, and she manages to create so much depth within a relatively simple plot. The pr This thing sat on our bookshelf in middle school, and I can't even count the number of times I pushed it aside while looking for new stuff to read. It was written by the same author as my all-time favorite book, Mara Daughter of the Nile, and I always meant to pick it up...but somehow I never got around to it. Well, 15 years later, I found it at my local library.

Eloise McGraw's writing career spanned nearly 50 years, and she manages to create so much depth within a relatively simple plot. The protagonist of The Moorchild is Moql'nkkn, a half-human, half-folk changeling. At first she's raised by the faeries, but she fails to fit in and is deemed "a danger to the band". She's exchanged for a servile human baby and must start life all over again with a new name - Saaski - and a completely new identity. Over time she forgets that she was ever a member of the folk, and she cannot understand why the superstitious people in her village treat her with such suspicion and contempt. Caught between two worlds, and belonging nowhere, Saaski/Moql must come to an understanding about her true nature and find a place she can call her own.

This is definitely an outcast/misfit story and will resonate with anyone who was ostracized as a child. Even though Saaski is a strange and even occasionally unsettling character, it is impossible not to empathize with her. I was rooting for her the entire time, and the ending was very satisfying.

I had a lot of fun with this book...I've been reading it out loud to my mom while she gardens, doing my best impression of an Irish accent during the dialogue bits. A+ summer entertainment; 4.5/5 stars.
Julie Decker
Moql was having a grand old time with her fae kin until she endangered her group by not being able to become invisible. Parentage is an almost perverted concept among the Folk, so she had no idea who her dad was, but when it becomes clear that her father was human, her strangeness is diagnosed. The authorities among her kin decide to cast her out, switching her with a nearby infant named Saaski. She finds herself transformed and helpless, and in a mixture of rage and heartbreak, Moql forgets who Moql was having a grand old time with her fae kin until she endangered her group by not being able to become invisible. Parentage is an almost perverted concept among the Folk, so she had no idea who her dad was, but when it becomes clear that her father was human, her strangeness is diagnosed. The authorities among her kin decide to cast her out, switching her with a nearby infant named Saaski. She finds herself transformed and helpless, and in a mixture of rage and heartbreak, Moql forgets who she was and where she came from, now being raised by a human family and assigned Saaski's name. She grows up strange and rejected, feeling that something is fundamentally different about her, flinching from iron and being drawn toward the moor where she can play her music. Her grandmother is initially hostile, knowing this is not her grandchild, but soon she realizes this is a creature that can't help what she is, and she grows fond of the fae child. Soon she finds another outcast child--Tam--and forms an unsteady bond with him, but all is not well; Moql discovers her true nature and what must have happened to the real Saaski, and it's up to someone with an eye in both worlds to set things right.

It's a gorgeously written, poignant book, entirely character driven and never sloppily plotted just for action's sake. You can find the familiar in Moql/Saaski despite her oddness, and sympathize with her as she examines her nature and feels alienated. The atmosphere of the old folk tale and the xenophobic villagers is pitch perfect, and I love the protagonist's musical connection. You can feel every heartbreak and betrayal. Such a wonderful book.
Katie
The last time I read this book, I was about 11 or 12. All these years later, I still love it.

I love the fact that this book is drenched in Irish folklore. I recently traveled to Ireland, and my tour guide shared many old tales and superstitions about fairy rings, mounds, hawthorn and rowan trees, etc. Having heard these things firsthand from an Irishman, my second reading of this book was much more clear. At 11, I remember being a little mystified as to McGraw's description of the Moorfolk and The last time I read this book, I was about 11 or 12. All these years later, I still love it.

I love the fact that this book is drenched in Irish folklore. I recently traveled to Ireland, and my tour guide shared many old tales and superstitions about fairy rings, mounds, hawthorn and rowan trees, etc. Having heard these things firsthand from an Irishman, my second reading of this book was much more clear. At 11, I remember being a little mystified as to McGraw's description of the Moorfolk and how their society operated. Now I understand it much better, and I have a newfound appreciation for that aspect of the book.

I had once given this book 4 stars, due to my 11-year-old memories of being dissatisfied that Saaski had to give up her pipes and the life she had known the longest (in Torskaal), and that her name would permanently be "Saaski" instead of "Moql." Again, now that I'm older, I can see why that had to be done, although it still makes me a bit sad.

The thing that captured me most about the novel when I first picked it up, was the dedication: "To all children who have ever felt different..." I was certainly not one of the popular kids in grade school, with my nose always stuck in a book, and my refusal to be obsessed with Pokemon or Bratz dolls. I saw myself in Saaski as she was teased, stared at, and called names. That was the most special thing about this reading experience: I felt I had gained a friend (albeit a book friend) who understood what I felt. Because of that, "The Moorchild" will always have a place on my bookshelf.
Kristen
A really neat book. If you like anything to do with fairy/little people type fantasy, you'll like this. Even if you don't gravitate toward that sort of thing, this is just an excellent book. It grabbed me from the first page.

Moql is a member of the "folk", the little people. She is half human and lacks the ability to vanish, so she is a danger to her people. They change her with a human baby in order to rid themselves of her, but she knows who she is. She grows up as Saaskia, a strange child who A really neat book. If you like anything to do with fairy/little people type fantasy, you'll like this. Even if you don't gravitate toward that sort of thing, this is just an excellent book. It grabbed me from the first page.

Moql is a member of the "folk", the little people. She is half human and lacks the ability to vanish, so she is a danger to her people. They change her with a human baby in order to rid themselves of her, but she knows who she is. She grows up as Saaskia, a strange child who doesn't fit in with her human counterparts.

Her relationship with her human grandmother is great, and her human parents defense and love for her, even with all her strangeness, is touching. The shepard boy who accepts her, just as she is, is great.

Saaskia is a great heroine. What an interesting story. The insight into life inside "the Mound" where the folk live, is fascinating. It almost reads like a true story, such is the detail.
Tori
2003- The story starts with a young girl named Moql'nkkn, who lives among the ""Folk"", a fairy like people. What Moql doesn't know is that she's only half-Folk. She finds it this out at the worst possible time- when she is supposed to disappear in front of a human. When she can't, she is brought to the ""Prince"" of the Folk, who decides she is to be exchanged for a human baby, which the Folk will use as a slave. Moql wakes up in a nearby village, and is called Saaski, her parents believing she 2003- The story starts with a young girl named Moql'nkkn, who lives among the ""Folk"", a fairy like people. What Moql doesn't know is that she's only half-Folk. She finds it this out at the worst possible time- when she is supposed to disappear in front of a human. When she can't, she is brought to the ""Prince"" of the Folk, who decides she is to be exchanged for a human baby, which the Folk will use as a slave. Moql wakes up in a nearby village, and is called Saaski, her parents believing she is their human child, and the new little Saaski forgetting almost all of her old life. Saaski is hated by the villagers, who think she is a evil being. Her only true friend is Tam, a young boy who watches goats. The writing makes this book seem to come alive. The storyline will grip you and make you wonder what will happen next. Will Saaski find out who she truly is? Will the villagers harm her? And who are the small people she sometimes sees on her beloved moor?
thebaronessofbooks
I remember first reading this book back in fifth grade, and I only vaguely remembered most of the plot. Finding it again I was surprised how I'd missed a lot of the plot and forgotten many of the characters. Re-reading it again after more than two decades made me a bit more appreciative of the story because I'm now more knowledgeable in faery folklore. And how Moql (Saaski)felt not being able to find her place.

Maybe that's the reason the ending made me tear up, because of how bittersweet it rea I remember first reading this book back in fifth grade, and I only vaguely remembered most of the plot. Finding it again I was surprised how I'd missed a lot of the plot and forgotten many of the characters. Re-reading it again after more than two decades made me a bit more appreciative of the story because I'm now more knowledgeable in faery folklore. And how Moql (Saaski)felt not being able to find her place.

Maybe that's the reason the ending made me tear up, because of how bittersweet it really was. Saaski would never find her place in either the human or fae world, and that now she has to wander the world. She does have her friend and knows more about who and what she is...but there's something really sad about a person not having a place that's really 'theirs'. And also factoring in the fact that she's a child when all of this happens, is also something that makes me choke up a bit.
Kelly
This was the first story I've read of the "changling" storyline in traditional folklore or fantasy stories. It took me awhile to get into it. By the end, though, I couldn't put it down. It was a powerful story, one that any child who ever feels "different" would understand. Saaski was so downtrodden for most of the book, and without giving too much away, became such a fighter by the end of the book. I admired her tenacity and spunk, which was missing throughout most of the first half of the book This was the first story I've read of the "changling" storyline in traditional folklore or fantasy stories. It took me awhile to get into it. By the end, though, I couldn't put it down. It was a powerful story, one that any child who ever feels "different" would understand. Saaski was so downtrodden for most of the book, and without giving too much away, became such a fighter by the end of the book. I admired her tenacity and spunk, which was missing throughout most of the first half of the book. Her true character came out the more she found out about herself and the more she just allowed herself to be "different". It's almost like she eventually learned to say, "the h%#!! with you all!" Her one true friendship with Tam is inspiring and shows what real friendship is all about. Old Bess also showed understanding and patience with Saaski, a lesson in tolerance and stopping to really listen and try to understand someone. A great book!
Leslie
I had never even heard of this wonderful book when I picked it up yesterday and can't imagine why. I know it must be popular with somebody because of it's shiny "Newberry Honor" medal on the cover. That's how I know a book will be worthwhile - medals on the cover have been my assurance of quality since I was a wee child. A secret my first librarian frind taught me.
Anyway, this is the story of a "Changling". A girl her fairy-type people left in the place of the human baby they stole. She has c I had never even heard of this wonderful book when I picked it up yesterday and can't imagine why. I know it must be popular with somebody because of it's shiny "Newberry Honor" medal on the cover. That's how I know a book will be worthwhile - medals on the cover have been my assurance of quality since I was a wee child. A secret my first librarian frind taught me.
Anyway, this is the story of a "Changling". A girl her fairy-type people left in the place of the human baby they stole. She has certain peculiar abilities and problems that put her between a rock and a hard place eventually.
Very interesting story, fabulous language, mystery, suspence, it's all here. I love a story that is tricksy enought to keep me guessing. I love it when I am surprised and don't honestly know what the heck is ganna happen next. This story was all that.
Lorna
This book by Eloise McGraw is about the mythical creature known as a changeling. This story follows the life of Saaski who discovers and remembers that she is not completely human as she had thought she'd been and as suspected by those who lived in her small town. She finds out that she is only half human and is the offspring of a fisherman who had fallen in love with a faerie or known in the book Folk. She is switched with a human baby and grows up in the human world. After discovering her true This book by Eloise McGraw is about the mythical creature known as a changeling. This story follows the life of Saaski who discovers and remembers that she is not completely human as she had thought she'd been and as suspected by those who lived in her small town. She finds out that she is only half human and is the offspring of a fisherman who had fallen in love with a faerie or known in the book Folk. She is switched with a human baby and grows up in the human world. After discovering her true heritage she sets out to set things right and to discover who she truly is.
I thought this book was quite interesting. Elose McGraw brings in fun and enjoyable characters. The book was entertaining with the various characters and the mystery of Sasski's journey. I would recommend this to anyone interested in faerie folklore and stories about finding oneself.
Audry
A Folk child learns she is half Folk and half human. She can't turn invisible or anything important that Folk do, so the Folk prince decides to turn her into a changling, which is take a human baby that hasn't been christened yet, and exchange it for her, as a baby. The grandmother suspects, but her new parents don't want to hear it. As she grows, her difference becomes more pronounced, and the other village children taunt and tease her and are mean to her, the the adults are wary of her. She mo A Folk child learns she is half Folk and half human. She can't turn invisible or anything important that Folk do, so the Folk prince decides to turn her into a changling, which is take a human baby that hasn't been christened yet, and exchange it for her, as a baby. The grandmother suspects, but her new parents don't want to hear it. As she grows, her difference becomes more pronounced, and the other village children taunt and tease her and are mean to her, the the adults are wary of her. She mostly stays by herself. As she gets older, she becomes closer to her grandmother, who thinks she herself was a changling. The climax comes as midsummer eve is arriving, and the village is determined to destroy her.

As Saaski learns the truth about herself, she and her friend, Tam, find a daring and dangerous way to repay all the love and caring she had received from her parents.
Joanne G.
It's a happy day when I discover a new-to-me author whom I absolutely love. Eloise Jarvis McGraw was born in 1915 and began writing in 1943. Moorchild was written in 1997, just three years before her death. It was awarded the Newbery Honor. What a long, successful writing career.

Moorchild is a sensitive telling of a child, terribly out of place, trying to fit in. There were so many places in the story where I longed for the people around the child to affirm her or to show her some affection or It's a happy day when I discover a new-to-me author whom I absolutely love. Eloise Jarvis McGraw was born in 1915 and began writing in 1943. Moorchild was written in 1997, just three years before her death. It was awarded the Newbery Honor. What a long, successful writing career.

Moorchild is a sensitive telling of a child, terribly out of place, trying to fit in. There were so many places in the story where I longed for the people around the child to affirm her or to show her some affection or understanding, but it was wise of McGraw to withhold those from her protagonist. Many young people will identify with the moorchild, and it should give them hope that she was able to find her way through her own courage and kindness.

The only drawback to Moorchild is that there is no sequel. I would have loved to read the girl's continuing adventures.

Tamara
I first read this book when I was 11 and it still hasn't lost any of it's magic. I have read it so may time my parents bought me a harback copy a couple years ago becuase mine was falling apart.
This book is what first really took me into the fantasy genre and introduced me to folklore. While never an outcast I was always a bit different and I identified with Saaski and was enchanted by her world. Eloise McGraw does a fantastic job of keeping Saaski human enough to identify with and yet fae (moor I first read this book when I was 11 and it still hasn't lost any of it's magic. I have read it so may time my parents bought me a harback copy a couple years ago becuase mine was falling apart.
This book is what first really took me into the fantasy genre and introduced me to folklore. While never an outcast I was always a bit different and I identified with Saaski and was enchanted by her world. Eloise McGraw does a fantastic job of keeping Saaski human enough to identify with and yet fae (moorfolk) enough that she remains mysterious and different. I was a bit shelterd too so it also opened my eyes to bullying and discrimination which I'd never experienced. A must read for the "different" children of all ages.
Anna
I loved this book as a middle-grade reader. I've been looking for it for years, and am so glad to have finally found it. Something about the differentness of the child, the way she was ostracized and would never really fit in either the fairy world or the human one, I think really resonates with some children, especially on the cusp of adolescence. It doesn't tie up all its ends into a happily-ever-after conclusion, which is unusual for both its target age and its genre. This fits beautifully in I loved this book as a middle-grade reader. I've been looking for it for years, and am so glad to have finally found it. Something about the differentness of the child, the way she was ostracized and would never really fit in either the fairy world or the human one, I think really resonates with some children, especially on the cusp of adolescence. It doesn't tie up all its ends into a happily-ever-after conclusion, which is unusual for both its target age and its genre. This fits beautifully into fairy tale mythology but transcends it to say something important about the way some children, and indeed people, experience the world. Sometimes it is all too prone to suspicion, doubt, and group-think mentality, and the young, the different, and the otherwise vulnerable get stuck in the lurch.
Aubrey
I read the Moorchild in the fourth grade in Mrs. Daniel's class during every thirty minute block of silent reading time until it was finished.

This book got to me.

Towards the end of the novel, I sort of... lost it in class. I cried. Like a Baby. I was just so deeply moved by the events, I had never read a sad book until then.

Anyway, I got to go home early that day. My mom still giggles every time we bring it up. (I had been very distraught), I guess that was funny as a parent to see your kid so I read the Moorchild in the fourth grade in Mrs. Daniel's class during every thirty minute block of silent reading time until it was finished.

This book got to me.

Towards the end of the novel, I sort of... lost it in class. I cried. Like a Baby. I was just so deeply moved by the events, I had never read a sad book until then.

Anyway, I got to go home early that day. My mom still giggles every time we bring it up. (I had been very distraught), I guess that was funny as a parent to see your kid so profoundly effected by her reading material. Funny thing is, even now whenever I think about the Moorchild I get goosebumps all up and down my arms. I couldn't forget it if I tried.

This book was my first true favorite.
Rachel Bosen
This is a lovely book for anyone who has ever felt strange, unwanted, or out of place, and also for any parent who finds themselves with a child who is "different" from what they wanted.

I read this book as a lonely little girl, and as an expectant mother who wasn't getting exactly what she'd ordered. The greatest takeaway is this:

Children, your parents love you. No matter what.

And Parents: you will never have another child like the one who is taxing you so right now- so treasure it because th This is a lovely book for anyone who has ever felt strange, unwanted, or out of place, and also for any parent who finds themselves with a child who is "different" from what they wanted.

I read this book as a lonely little girl, and as an expectant mother who wasn't getting exactly what she'd ordered. The greatest takeaway is this:

Children, your parents love you. No matter what.

And Parents: you will never have another child like the one who is taxing you so right now- so treasure it because they could be gone at any moment.

It's a tender, simply written story,with a well-developed main character.
Brianna
One of my alltime favorites, this book helped me get through times when I was picked on and didn't fit in as a child. This book tells the story of a changeling, a faerie child swapped for a human baby. She didn't want to be changed, and is terrified, lonely, and enraged. But with no choice, she forces herself to forget wheere she came from and tries to grow up human. But in a little, small-minded village, that one different child becomes the target of bullying, gossip, fear, and eventually viole One of my alltime favorites, this book helped me get through times when I was picked on and didn't fit in as a child. This book tells the story of a changeling, a faerie child swapped for a human baby. She didn't want to be changed, and is terrified, lonely, and enraged. But with no choice, she forces herself to forget wheere she came from and tries to grow up human. But in a little, small-minded village, that one different child becomes the target of bullying, gossip, fear, and eventually violence. This book has powerful messages about what family really is, the danger of ignorance, and how hard, and wonderful, it can be to be different.
Genre: Fantasy
Jenny Schramm
I really liked this book. It took me awhile to get into it because a lot happens in the beginning. I really like it because I have this fascination with Irish things, so I loved that they talk the majority of the book in an Irish accent. My favorite quote from the book would have to be, "but she was sure she belonged with Tam." I loved this quote, because it shows that she has really liked him and trust him all along. I would teach this to kids in P.E. by having them act like Mogl and pretend th I really liked this book. It took me awhile to get into it because a lot happens in the beginning. I really like it because I have this fascination with Irish things, so I loved that they talk the majority of the book in an Irish accent. My favorite quote from the book would have to be, "but she was sure she belonged with Tam." I loved this quote, because it shows that she has really liked him and trust him all along. I would teach this to kids in P.E. by having them act like Mogl and pretend they are being chased, or pretend that they have to hide, and see who can run the fastest or hide the best
Amy
I love my job. Do you realize I get paid to read?
The Moorchild is not the type of story I normally read. It is about a young girl - half moorchild half human - who belongs to neither world and her adventure. The main character is a sweet, likable character, as are those around her. It is not very thick, but definetely worth reading a little off the beaten path. It reminds me of The Perilous Gard, which is one of my favorite books.
Worth reading!
Julia Miller
This beautiful little fantasy story touches on the old myth of the changeling, a fairy who has been swapped out for a real child. It's a fascinating tale about a girl who comes to slowly realize she is a changeling herself after struggling to fit in to her community for years. When she finds out what happened to her 'parents' real child, what will she do?

It's bittersweet in many ways, and echoed with me as someone who never quite fit in. I would love to share this with children who like fantasy This beautiful little fantasy story touches on the old myth of the changeling, a fairy who has been swapped out for a real child. It's a fascinating tale about a girl who comes to slowly realize she is a changeling herself after struggling to fit in to her community for years. When she finds out what happened to her 'parents' real child, what will she do?

It's bittersweet in many ways, and echoed with me as someone who never quite fit in. I would love to share this with children who like fantasy, music (the girl is a natural musician), or even just a little bit of a mystery.
Oklee
I bought this book for my granddaughter but read it first for myself. I have always loved stories about fairies. This story is about a charming half-fairy, half-human who starts out in the fairy world but is thrown into the human world. She actually does not fit in either world due to her genetics and being "different". She struggles to belong and slowly discovers herself and realizes what she must do to be happy. Yes...This book will be a good one for my granddaughter. I hope she understands an I bought this book for my granddaughter but read it first for myself. I have always loved stories about fairies. This story is about a charming half-fairy, half-human who starts out in the fairy world but is thrown into the human world. She actually does not fit in either world due to her genetics and being "different". She struggles to belong and slowly discovers herself and realizes what she must do to be happy. Yes...This book will be a good one for my granddaughter. I hope she understands and appreciates the descriptive terms and words from another place and another time.
Dan
My daughter read this in middle school. I picked it up because she was having difficulty with the characters early in the book (the swapping of the changling was confusing for her). I decided to read it to help answer questions she had and to work with her on understanding. Needless to say, once I picked it up and started reading it, I did not put it down until the wee hours of the morning when I had completed it. A very enjoyable book with a spiritual bend. I'm generally a big fan of dystopian My daughter read this in middle school. I picked it up because she was having difficulty with the characters early in the book (the swapping of the changling was confusing for her). I decided to read it to help answer questions she had and to work with her on understanding. Needless to say, once I picked it up and started reading it, I did not put it down until the wee hours of the morning when I had completed it. A very enjoyable book with a spiritual bend. I'm generally a big fan of dystopian literature, but I certainly have a place on the bookshelf for this one.
Hilary
Never quite fitting in with her long fingers and toes, her longing for the forbidden Moor, and uncanny abilities to climb and play strange tunes on the bagpipes, Saaski discovers her true identity and sets out to find the Moorpeople that she came from and the child that was stolen from her parents years earlier. McGraws vernacular is so convincing, not at all contrived like so many tales set in otherworld medieval times. Appropriate as a read-a-loud for ages 7+, but a more challenging offering f Never quite fitting in with her long fingers and toes, her longing for the forbidden Moor, and uncanny abilities to climb and play strange tunes on the bagpipes, Saaski discovers her true identity and sets out to find the Moorpeople that she came from and the child that was stolen from her parents years earlier. McGraws vernacular is so convincing, not at all contrived like so many tales set in otherworld medieval times. Appropriate as a read-a-loud for ages 7+, but a more challenging offering for an independent reader, grades 5+.
The Book Posh
I loved this story! More so toward the end of the book. A powerful story about prejudice, this fantasy takes you into the world of Saaski or Moql, as her Moorfolk people named her. Half human and half Moorfolk, she is banished from the Moorfolk world because of her inabilty to disappear, to live amongst the human race. Of course, she is feared because she looks and behaves differently than a human child. She is taunted and ridiculed for being different. A heartwarmming story for adults and child I loved this story! More so toward the end of the book. A powerful story about prejudice, this fantasy takes you into the world of Saaski or Moql, as her Moorfolk people named her. Half human and half Moorfolk, she is banished from the Moorfolk world because of her inabilty to disappear, to live amongst the human race. Of course, she is feared because she looks and behaves differently than a human child. She is taunted and ridiculed for being different. A heartwarmming story for adults and children alike.
Libby Ames
A well-written book, The Moorchild is a powerful story about the dangers of prejudice. Labeled by the other town children as "freaky-odd," Saaski deals with teasing and cruelty as she grows up. The overall experience is one of triumph and finding your place in the world, however, parts are painful to read. We started reading this one outloud to Anna, but the conflict was too difficult for her. I finished reading on my own and told her about the "happy" ending. I'm sure she will enjoy it when she A well-written book, The Moorchild is a powerful story about the dangers of prejudice. Labeled by the other town children as "freaky-odd," Saaski deals with teasing and cruelty as she grows up. The overall experience is one of triumph and finding your place in the world, however, parts are painful to read. We started reading this one outloud to Anna, but the conflict was too difficult for her. I finished reading on my own and told her about the "happy" ending. I'm sure she will enjoy it when she is older.
Suzanna
I'm on a Newberry Award kick right now-- this was a Newberry Honor book. I really liked it -- it's the story of Saaski who is half-fairy and half human and doesn't really belong in either world. It was actually sad in the sense that she was poorly treated by so many just because she was different. The book was beautifully written and my only complaint is that the author sucked me from the beginning and then the book was kind of slow (a common complaint from me lately) through the middle section I'm on a Newberry Award kick right now-- this was a Newberry Honor book. I really liked it -- it's the story of Saaski who is half-fairy and half human and doesn't really belong in either world. It was actually sad in the sense that she was poorly treated by so many just because she was different. The book was beautifully written and my only complaint is that the author sucked me from the beginning and then the book was kind of slow (a common complaint from me lately) through the middle section and then the end was almost too quickly resolved. It's definitely worth reading!
Linda
It was good, but not as good as I was expecting it to be. Still, I enjoyed it, though I don't think I'll read it again.
One thing I did like, was the way Eloise Jarvis McGraw described the way a bagpipe sounds.
And, after reading this, I really don't like the traditional fairies/pixies/folk/elves of stories. They're not very nice...just air-headed creatures.
wanderer
A lovely, bittersweet story about being different and a search to belong. The main character is rejected by "the Folk" for being half human, and rejected by humans for being half Folk. She understands and misunderstands both, poor thing, and makes for a brave and sympathetic character. Great setting, intriguing plot, and beautiful writing. Eloise McGraw is a favorite author, and this book reminded me why.
Laura Sibson
This book surprised me with its depth. McGraw created a thoroughly engaging character in Saaski, a half-human, half-folk child who belongs nowhere. The book has a wonderful sense of place -- I felt as though I stood on the moors with Saaski while she practiced her bagpipes, collected wildflowers and wished to fit in. While it was very much set in a time from long ago, the themes are current for children everywhere who are taunted and bullied for being different. Wonderful book.
Amalia
Well-written work of young adult fantasy fiction. Reader gets drawn in quickly into the imagined world of a changeling who didn't fit in to the Moorfolk world or the normal human village life. Character driven, the author is able to develop the main character with skilled nuance.

I only wish Saaski told Anwara she loved her at the end of the book, but I'm sure that was intentional by the author to display how emotions are balanced in the half-Moorfolk half-human protagonist.
Darlene
I know it's young adult fiction, but I couldn't put it down. First of all iti's a Newberry winner and I'm trying to make my way through the whole list. This story is about a young girl who knows she doesn't fit in to her small midieval village...she suspects she is a faerie or a leprechaun...but the book doesn't actually use those words...there is a lot of injustice in the book coupled with bullying..the end kinda ends happily ever after...but only kinda, which makes the book interesting!
Christina Davis
What a delightful stumble-upon in the school library! I picked it up hoping to find something my girls would like and found gold. I loved that it was easy to read, yet very well written.

It is a story about a Pixy from the Moor growing up as a human child. It is full of music, a little magic, and a very special deed done by one learning to love others. The moral taught is about tolerance, and doing what's right even when others have done wrong. I highly recommend it!
Misty
I bought this when I was in middle school at a book fair on a whim. My mom helped me pick out a few more but this one seemed the most interesting. I started to read it right away and I loved it.

Miss Mcgraw has a wonderful talent for spinning a tale and it makes you feel like part of the story watching it all happen around you.
Little girls 10 and up will love this book especially if they like fantasy.
Ilana
Maybe I'm romanticizing my life just a little, but the themes in this book seem to be reoccurring in my life and I often feel the desire to pick up the book again. Something about the raw writing style set in the backdrop of an unidentifiable time of antiquity made the story eerily universal. A sense of sadness, isolation, and surrealism fills the story and made it perfect for a precociously melancholy kid such as myself, as well as a nostalgic adult.
Emily
While it might not be as funny as ARTEMIS FOWL, I'd say this is the best fairy/faerie book I've come across. Saaski's plight of being half-human, half-Folk is rendered with poignancy and realism. The main characters have strong personalities, but they aren't obnoxious. McGraw's rich and sure use of colloquisms and local color is thoroughly charming. I was genuinely entertained the entire time and I look forward to recommending this book to the younger people in my life.
Meredith Armstrong
This is a wonderful tale of a girl trapped between cultures and trying to find her own identity. I found the story compelling, full of richly written characters in a believable and accessibly generic historical setting. The differences between humans and "the Folk" were shown clearly and without judgment. Humans and fae each had their positive and negative aspects, individually and in their respective societies, and the interactions between them illustrated those differences well.
Tahleen
I really liked this book! It centers around fairy lore, which I didn't know much about at the time I read it, so I found it all fascinating. Plus the story was great; the main character is a changeling and it's her story. Third-person omniscient P.O.V., but we're getting all her thoughts and perspectives.
Shauna
This is a sweet story. It has good imagry and a nice moral. There's a lot already reviewed on this book that seems quite accurate to me. I stumbled on it at a garage sale one day. I had never heard of it but was promised it was very good. It's a bit of a fairy tale without much of a traditional fairy.
Alyssa
It was a cute little book about not fitting in and trying to find a place for yourself. This is one of my roadtrip books. I read it when there are no new books because it is an easy read. It can take a little bit to get into it, but I enjoy it all the same. I have to be in the mood to read it, though.
Gary Urey
The Moorchild, in my opinion, is one of the top five greatest children's books ever published. Just a super book of a misunderstood girl/changeling set in the middle ages. Although, it was a newbery honor book in the nineties, I think it flies under the radar. The author was in her late seventies when she wrote it!
Christin (Portrait of a Book)
In addition to being a great story, this book really speaks to learning about and knowing who you are, then making the choices that work for you. It's very relatable for anybody who has ever felt different or excluded.

Saaski (Moql) fits in neither with the Moorfolk nor in the fishing village. But she eventually finds her place and makes things right again.
Melinda
An interesting read about a young changeling who is cast out from among them and sent to live with humans. A great example of the difficulties of being different and enduring the tauntings that occur as a result of that. I loved the mystic feeling of the book, how Saaski is drawn to the moor, her inborn talent for the bagpipes and her innate desire to discover who she is.
Genesis
This novel made me understand that being different doesn't really matter. It took me a while to understand what was going on and who the charcters were. I had to read some chapters over an dover again before I could understand the message of the story. This book is recomended to eleven year olds. They would enjoy to read about the main charcater.
Lissa
This book was a little different for me- I thought it was really engaging while I was actually reading, but I had not problem putting it down. Then, when I came back to it, I was really interested, even though I could put it down without hesitation. So... I guess I liked it but not enough? I still can't decide.
Heide
This book started out kinda slow. There was a lot of back story to be had. It ended nice, very heartwarming and such. It was until the last third or so that I actually wanted to read the book and thought about it when I was sitting down to read. The story just didn't stay with me very well. I'm not sad I read it, but I'm not overwhelmed either.
Mary
I liked this book -- I couldn't really decide whether to give it a 3 or a 4 star rating because it fell in the middle for me.... 3.5, and I'm probably just a little on the grumpy side tonight as I score it. It was clean (hooray) and simple, a nice quick read about a half-human, half-moorfolk girl (think pixie) who is raised as a changling until she realizes where she really comes from.
Naomi
This is a strange and endearing book that takes the classic theme of changeling children and breathes new life into it while nevertheless staying true to traditional folklore. Readers will sympathize with Saaski (formerly Moql'nkkn) in her outcast state and the trials she faces teach important life lessons about individuality and the inherent cruelty and stupidity of xenophobia.
Juanita Johnson
What a wonderful tale. This book tells the story of a Changling. The Changling is not part of one world or another but learns to love the people who she is placed with. It's a chlid's book but its also a story for all ages. We dance through the story with fairies then feel the pain of not belonging in one place or another.
Brigid
This book was truly poetic. It seemed to have been written a long time ago by someone with a lot on their mind. I really admired the main charactor. She was very mellow even when everyone was against her. She found her strengths and stuck to them and was able to find herself and where she belonged.
Ginger
I think this is a good book for any tween- to young teen- aged girl to read. Brings up some great lessons on belonging and finding ones place (and also not listening to bullies). The characters were sweet and the ending was heart-warming. The language is a bit hard, so maybe it would be better to read aloud.
Shilo Quetchenbach
Beautiful. Haunting. You can almost hear the piping on the moor, as if from the corner of your eye. This book is intended for a younger audience, but I love it anyway - and I wish I'd come across it as a child, when I felt so odd and out of place all the time. A must-read for outsiders, loners, and those who are considered a bit odd by their peers.
Joni
This book follows a "changeling" and her discovery of self. But it's more than that too as the author describes many different relationships Saaski has. It was interesting to me how complicated many of the relationships really were and also how the Changeling comes of age. There is a reason this got a Newberry award (I can't remember if it was an honor or a medal).
Allison
While reading this book I felt SO bad for Saaski. Everyone at one time in there life has felt like her.. felt like they just don't fit in anywhere!! But she has an amazing friend.. and I believe that if we have at least ONE person that we can trust and that will be there for us through anything, then we can make it through any hard time!!
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