by Marshall Poe and Leland Purvis
Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Aladdin
Format: softcover, 5x7, black & white, $7.99
Reviewed by: School Library Journal
A brief but compelling story set during the American Revolution. Nathaniel is just a boy in 1768 Boston when he first hears grumblings against British rule. His naive hero worship of the patriots is treason in the eyes of his fiercely loyal father and thus the stage is set for battles both in and out of the home. Over the years and as the situation in his hometown worsens, Nathaniel encounters several prominent figures, including Samuel Adams and Paul Revere, who guide him on his journey from idealistic youth to committed revolutionary. He even manages to sway his father, who is eventually killed on the battlefield. The streamlining of events greatly simplifies the complex history of the conflict, and the depictions of British soldiers and aristocrats verges on caricature, but the personal nature of the story and the loose, sketchy art will invite young readers into this fascinating time and place. Consider this for readers not yet ready for Esther Forbes's Johnny Tremain (Houghton, 1943), with which it bears many similarities.
–Douglas P. Davey, Halton Hills Public Library, Ontario, Canada