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Extended Audio Sample Breadcrumbs, by Anne Ursu Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Anne Ursu Narrator: Kirby Heyborne Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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The winner of numerous awards and the recipient of four starred reviews, Anne Ursu’s Breadcrumbs is a stunning and heartbreaking story of growing up, wrapped in a modern-day fairy tale.

Once upon a time, Hazel and Jack were best friends. But that was before he stopped talking to her and disappeared into a forest with a mysterious woman made of ice. Now it’s up to Hazel to go in after him. Inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Snow Queen,” Breadcrumbs is a stunningly original fairy tale of modern-day America, a dazzling ode to the power of fantasy, and a heartbreaking meditation on how growing up is as much a choice as it is something that happens to us.

In Breadcrumbs, Anne Ursu tells, in her one-of-a-kind voice, a story that brings together fifty years of children’s literature in a tale as modern as it is timeless. Hazel’s journey to come to terms with her evolving friendship with Jack will deeply resonate with young readers.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Devastatingly brilliant and beautiful...Ursu has sculpted a rich and poignant adventure that brings readers deep into the mysterious, magical, and sometimes frightening forests of childhood and change. Breadcrumbs is one of those rare novels that turned me on my head then sat on my heart and refused to budge.”

    Ingrid Law, Newbery Honor–winning author of Savvy 

  • “This is a lyrical book, a lovely book, and a smart book; it dares us to see stories as spreading more widely, and running more deeply, than we had imagined.”

    Gary Schmidt, Newbery Honor–winning author of The Wednesday Wars 

  • “Wonderfully distinct, delightfully told, and destined for a long life on the shelf.” 

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Hazel is a tremendously sympathetic and likable heroine: imaginative, clever, loyal, and a bit sarcastic. Ursu’s writing is lovely.” 

    Children’s Literature

  • “The creepy fantasyland that Hazel traverses uses bits from other Andersen tales to create a story that...is beautifully written and wholly original.” 

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Kirby Heyborne...excels with dialogue and characterization. The listener easily pictures awkward Hazel, cocky tween boys, cruel witches, and helpful woodsmen...This is a gem, and Heyborne makes the audio experience one to treasure with family.” 


  • “[A] multi-layered, artfully crafted, transforming testament to the power of friendship.” 

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “Although this is a fantasy, its grounding in psychological realism and focus on Hazel’s feelings makes it a fine choice for readers who prefer realistic fiction. Ursu’s multilayered, dreamlike story stands out from the fantasy/quest pack.”

    School Library Journal

  • Selected for the Winter 2012 Kids' Indie Next List
  • A 2011 Publishers Weekly Best Book: Children's Literature
  • A 2011 School Library Journal Best Book for Children

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by April | 11/2/2011

    " Slightly creepy, like fairy tales often are.

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Ann | 10/25/2011

    " Great coming of age story. It's (Hazel)Hansel and Gretel Meets the snow queen. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by H.s. | 10/12/2011

    " seems well enough, just isn't standing out, so I am moving on to the next Mock-Newbery book. Writer seemed to be good, so maybe I'll try another one of her books another time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Linda | 10/10/2011

    " Retold fairy tales at their best! Highly recommend for ages 8+ "

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About the Author
Author Anne Ursu

Anne Ursu is the author of the three middle-grade novels that comprise the Cronus Chronicles trilogy: The Shadow Thieves, The Siren Song, and The Immortal Fire. She teaches at Hamline University's MFA program in Writing for Children and is a lifelong Minnesota Twins fan. Anne lives in Minneapolis with her son and cats.