Young people across America are rediscovering G. A. Henty, the nineteenth-century literary genius whose historical adventures inspire boys toward honesty, courage, and duty. Writing from a Christian perspective, Henty weaves the adventures of a fictional boy hero together with real-life events. This stirring tale chronicles the last days of the Temple at Jerusalem. As robber bands and political infighting set the stage for the Roman destruction of Jerusalem, John, a fifteen-year-old Galilean, finds himself in the forefront of events. After escaping the massacre at Jotapata, John becomes a hero to the Jews and a scourge to the Romans. He defends Jerusalem during the Roman siege and even fights Titus himself in hand-to-hand combat. Though he is fighting a losing battle, John proves his enduring integrity and honor.
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George Alfred Henty (1832-1902) was born in Trumpington, England. He studied at Cambridge but left without his degree to volunteer for service in the Crimean War. After several failed attempts at careers, he decided in 1865 to become a writer, beginning as a correspondent for the Standard. He wrote his first boys' adventure, Out of the Pampas, in 1868, and its popularity spurred him to write some eighty more children's books. Drawing on his own experiences fighting in the Crimean War and as a foreign correspondent in Europe and Africa, Henty fashioned stories for children that combined realism and what he called a "manly tone." His novels encompass an array of times and places from the early days of Egypt to the mines of the California Gold Rush. He died in 1906, having left a legacy of 144 books and several short stories.
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