cropped woundabout cover

For ages 8-12
Educator’s Guide

Cybils Award Nominee

Puss Reboots best of 2015

An IndieBound Favorite

A Kirkus Best of the Week

“A fairy tale–like novel that weaves a gentle spell as it builds to a dramatic, satisfying conclusion. Lev Rosen sensitively addresses change, growth, and painful emotions like grief, while Ellis Rosen’s b&w illustrations are alternately haunting, comedic, and poignant, in keeping with the overall tone of the story.”
Publishers Weekly

“Any young reader who enjoys a good plot, especially one that is realistic with a touch of fantasy, will like Woundabout… I thoroughly enjoyed reading it”
-9/10 from TIME Magazine for Kids

Welcome to Woundabout. It’s a very special place.

Siblings Connor and Cordelia with their pet capybara are sent to the strange town of Woundabout. An explosion on their parents’ capybara-training ranch has left them in the care of an eccentric aunt they’ve never met, and in a town they’ve never seen. A place where the mayor has declared that routine rules above all, and no one is allowed to ask questions because they should already know the answers.

Soon Connor and Cordelia discover a strange key-like crank that mysteriously fits into certain parts of town, and by winding the crank, part of the town begins to transform into something new…and beautiful.  When the townspeople see this transformation, they don’t see beauty, they only see change.  And change, the Mayor says, is something to fear. With the Mayor hot on their trail, can Connor and Cordelia find a way to convince the townspeople that change is just what the town needs?

In this exquisite and charming novel from brothers Lev and Ellis Rosen, life’s unexpected twists and turns can be frightening…but sometimes magical.

 “Witty and wise.. [Rosen] shows how the heart-lifting coexists with the heartbreaking… It’s a testament to moving forward in life.”
-The Austin American-Statesman


 “A touching story about the importance of change despite the hardships of life”
 -School Library Journal


“Everyone in Woundabout has been injured in some way; each is looking for healing. Loss, death, and sadness are each acknowledged as a powerful impetus to change…Appealing and pleasingly thoughtful.”

“This light mystery keeps itself on the right side of quirkiness, giving off a cozy charm… Connor and Cordelia’s willingness to make the best of their new life helps them cope with their parents’ deaths and teaches the people of Woundabout a vital lesson in the power of change.”

“The lesson that good must come at the cost of accepting change and heartbreak is gently, subtly conveyed, and the book effectively expresses the way tragedies can make otherwise sensible folks go along with a plan to essentially stop all progress and time in their town. The Mayor, the villain who used magic to halt this town, is complex and layered, and even he is ultimately a sympathetic figure in a book that explores the complexity of life in a startlingly sophisticated, thoughtful way.”
-The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“This is a great read-aloud–a magical journey into the nature of change and how change is, in itself, good and necessary. I loved it!”
-Shelf Awareness


Woundabout is a quirky, likable novel with some great lessons about life, loss and the genuine beauty of moving on.”
The Reading Nook Reviews

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