Orphaned by the brutal murder of their parents, Anne and her gentle but mute brother suffer great hardships as they travel across a dangerous, pestilence-ridden Europe to their uncle, an armorer and clockmaker, and, after his death, to a distant city to deliver the commissioned plans of his precious clock.
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Grade 7-10 Time is the binding theme in this starkly imagined life in late medieval Europe. Sixteen-year-old Anne's Uncle Albrecht, an ex-monk, seeks to order time as if thus to ascertain the mind of God. But rival forcesa duke, the church, and the town merchantsalso seek control of this new power image, the clock, amid social upheavals of laborers, marauding soldiers, outbreaks of plaguetimes of casual brutality, rape. Anne narrates this three-year account (her mute younger brother and his ever-present pet rabbit her companion and foil), from the horrendous opening scenes of her parents' murder, to a future made hopeful through her clockmaking experience. There are wonderful minor characters, such as a crazed Knight Templar and a Jew who finds temporary refuge as a copyist. Although some characters are introduced or events staged to present special information (e.g., knighthood, taxation, housekeeping practices), the crafting is so good and the writing so vivid that readers will be grateful. There are a few sunny spotsice skating and delight in a spring day after being plague-bound, but the overall atmosphere evoked is somber and symbolic. Ruth M. McConnell, San Antonio Public Library
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.
In this stunning epic set in 14th centu ry Europe, a young woman helps build the first timepiece. Ages 12-up.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Hutchinson, 1987. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 91705703