Sixteen-year-old Edward sails with friends from England to the New World in 1632 and joins the colony founded by the Pilgrims at Plymouth, discovering the perils and hardships of colonial life.
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Grade 7-10 In 1632, lovestruck Edward Deane leaves Yorkshire, England, his family, and his livelihood as a shepherd to follow beloved Rebecca, her aunt and her n'er-do-well father to America. Edward's departure from home is secretive; the voyage on The Swallow is at times stormy and debilitating; his glimpse of life in New Plymouth persuades him that there's no place like home. Although passion supposedly drives Edward after Rebecca, the account of his journey is a passionless, lackluster chronicle of people and places. Edward's first-person narration gives a sense of immediacy to setting and events, but characters and relationships seem inconsequential, and the story never builds to a climax. Historical tidbits and descriptions are presented throughout the novel, but Dillon fails to convey the excitement and anxiety of leaving home, crossing a forbidding ocean and beginning life in the New World. Edward's observations of sickness aboard ship, the hardships of daily colonial life and the strict religious practices of the colonists lack poignancy and tension. After one winter in New Plymouth, he announces that he and Rebecca are returning to England. Their decision is neither traumatic nor ironic nor climactic. Although junior high readers will have no trouble with the text, they will need the pressure of an assignment on early America to seek out this novel. In contrast, Patricia Clapp's Constance: a Story of Early Plymouth (Lothrop, 1968), is a much more compelling account, tracing almost identical events and imbuing historical people and places with a spirit and vitality of their own. Gerry Larson, Chewning Junior High School, Durham, N.C.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.
A smoothly written historical novel about teenagers who are among the first English settlers in the New World. Ages 10-14.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Puffin Books, 1987. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0140323201
Book Description Puffin, 1987. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0140323201
Book Description Puffin Books, 1987. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110140323201
Book Description Puffin Books. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0140323201 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.1894792