The Dark is Rising

by Susan Cooper

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The Dark is Rising is an exceptional contemporary fantasy on the Common Core Standards Grades 6-8 Exemplars List. The novel tells the story of Will Stanton who on his eleventh birthday learns he is one of the Old Ones who is destined to save the world from the Dark. Will must collect six Signs and join them together before the Dark destroys Earth. Read The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper to see if Will can defeat the Dark.

Book Information

Publication Date: December 21, 2001


Reading Level: Lexile Measure 920L, Scholastic Guided Reading Level X


Interest Level: Grades 6 - 8


Major Awards: Newbery Honor Award and two Carnegie Honor Awards


Number of Pages: 232 pages


Approximate Word Count for the Five Book Series: 331,840 words - The average reader will spend 22 hours and 7 minutes reading The Dark Is Rising Sequence.


Audible Book Length: 8 hrs and 42 mins


Book Themes: Good vs Evil, Language and Communication, Fate vs Free Will, Power, Family


Genre: fantasy, #2 in a sequence of 5


Setting: England


Important Quote: The snow lay thin and apologetic over the world. That wide grey sweep was the lawn, with the straggling trees of the orchard still dark beyond; the white squares were the roofs of the garage, the old barn, the rabbit hutches, the chicken coops. Further back there were only the flat fields of Dawson's farm, dimly white-striped. All the broad sky was grey, full of more snow that refused to fall. There was no colour anywhere.”


First Line: "Too many!" James shouted, and slammed the door behind him. "What?" said Will.
"Too many kids in this family, that's what. Just too many."


Point of View: Third Person (Omniscient)

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