Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Young Adult Fiction Coming Of Age

Larkin on the Shore

by (author) Jean Mills

Red Deer Press
Initial publish date
Oct 2019
Coming of Age, Mysteries & Detective Stories, Law & Crime
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2019
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Oct 2019
    List Price

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 13 to 18
  • Grade: 8 to 12


Larkin Day is a messed up 16-year-old. She just escaped a nasty year in high school to spend summer with her grandmother in seaside Nova Scotia. It's the perfect setting to seek healing by putting all her energies into a local caf� project. If you're hurting, she learns, one of the best solutions is to invest yourself in something that can make you feel like you're part of something bigger than yourself.

But when an arsonist attempts to destroy the project, Larkin is forced to figure out a way to expose the criminal while keeping her life from coming off the rails again.

About the author

Jean Mills
is celebrated for two previous Young Adult novels, Skating Over Thin Ice and Larkin on the Shore — which won the 2020 Whippoorwill Award honoring "young adult literature that sings the authentic stories of rural people and places."

Jean spends her winters in Guelph, Ontario and the rest of the time in Pugwash, Nova Scotia.

Jean Mills' profile page

Editorial Reviews

"Mills pulls readers into Larkin's mind, skillfully unveiling family mysteries and glimpses of memory. Themes of coping techniques and recovery from trauma are woven seamlessly through the narration. Strong emphases on Larkin's bonds with Granne and her father, hometown history, and a slow-burning love story round out her emotional journey. The difficulties Larkin encounters are gripping, and readers will feel a connection to her. . . Readers will be pulled along by the strong voice in this emotional story."
Kirkus Reviews

"Larkin on the Shore is a gripping coming-of-age story whose compelling senses of pain, loss, and healing are navigated with skill."
Foreword Reviews

"Beautifully written, with vivid imagery of the Nova Scotia shore, this is a truly moving story of finding oneself after trauma"
School Library Journal

"Beautifully rendered descriptions of the Cumberland area of Nova Scotia provide the setting for Larkin's recovery. . . Adeptly written, with short, punchy chapters and moments of poignant intensity, Larkin on the Shore reveals the pain of mental illness and the healing power of human connection. A bonus closing feature is an eight-page "Interview with Jean Mills".
Highly Recommended"
CM Magazine

"Well-told, intense and at times heartbreaking."
Sheree Fitch, author of The Gravesavers

Other titles by Jean Mills

Related lists