Saturday, September 26, 2009

The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle (MG)


Avi. 1990. The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle. 278 pages.

Not every thirteen-year-old girl is accused of murder, brought to trial, and found guilty. But I was such a girl, and my story is worth relating even if it did happen years ago. Be warned, however, this is no Story of a Bad Boy, no What Katy Did. If strong ideas and action offend you, read no more. Find another companion to share your idle hours. For my part I intend to tell the truth as I lived it.

Set in 1832, The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle is an exciting adventure--a sea adventure, I might add--starring a young girl, Charlotte, as she learns some of the harsher facts of life aboard The Sea Hawk. She seeks passage home to America. Her father has made all the arrangements. But something unusual, something dangerous is happening aboard ship. The problem is, can Charlotte discover the truth about the dangers before it's too late? Who should she trust? The captain? Or the crew? One thing is for certain, her life will never be the same again! For better or worse...

What did you think of the opening? Did it grab your attention like it grabbed mine? I don't know what I was expecting with this one, but I don't think I expected this one to be quite so exciting. Don't get me wrong, it's still historical fiction. And I know that historical fiction isn't for every reader. But there is action and adventure and some mystery as well. It's not about being prim and proper and dressing up to have tea.

This one received a Newbery Honor.

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

7 comments:

Ladytink_534 3:08 PM  

I first fell in love with Avi through his Poppy books (which I really need to re-read). I just love Newbery winners and honors!

Janssen 9:50 PM  

This book is a hard sell because of the title, when I feel sure MANY of the boys in my library would love it!

Anastasia 10:59 PM  

Probably my favorite Avi book EVER. Though I agree with Janssen that the title makes it sound really dull (I didn't read it for at least six months because of that title...).

Fyrefly 9:19 PM  

I loved this book when I was a kid, and re-read it a few years ago, and still loved it! Actually, I think this might be what started my fascination with the Age of Sail (rechristened when I hit puberty as a love for Boys on Boats!) :)

Michelle 3:19 AM  

This was one of my all-time favourite books as a child! I'm sure it's due a re-read now!

Monica (aka monnibo) 6:54 PM  

This was my FAVOURITE book as a kid! And I still love it. I've been trying forever to find a copy with the cover I like! (not this one pictured)

Jennie 11:22 AM  

This was one of my favorites in 6th grade. So much adventure!

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
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4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
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