Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Cabin Faced West

The Cabin Faced West. Jean Fritz. Illustrated by Feodor Rojankovsky. 1958. 124 pages. [Source: Bought]

Ann Hamilton swept the last of the day's dust out of the door into the sunset. Even the cabin faced west, Ann thought as she jerked the broom across the flat path the daylight made as it fell through the open doorway. It was the only place the daylight had a chance to come in. The cabin was solid logs all the way around without another opening anywhere. Its back was turned squarely against the East just as her father had turned his back. Just as her older brothers, David and Daniel, had.

Did I enjoy reading Jean Fritz's The Cabin Faced West? YES!!! I loved, loved, LOVED it. It is the book that I probably would have read a dozen times or more if I'd read it as a kid. Honestly I probably would have worn the cover off of a copy! But I didn't "discover" this until I saw a copy on clearance for fifty cents at a used book store a few years ago decade ago. I do wish I'd taken the time to read it when I bought it! I probably would have read it a couple of times more at least. I am an again-again reader.

The Cabin Faced West is a children's historical novel. It is set in the days after the American Revolution. Ann Hamilton is the ten-year-old heroine. She has not decidedly "turned HER back" to the East as her father and brothers. She really, really misses Gettysburg: her old home, her friends, the family she left behind. She misses having a community close by--a community of girls her own age. There are a handful of neighbors about, but, do those neighbors have girls anywhere near her own age--NO, they do not. Just boys and babies, boys and babies. The boy closest her own age is named Andy. And he's "the worst of them all" at least sometimes.

I liked this one start to finish. I did. I loved the characters. Loved Ann's meeting with Arthur Scott, and, then, of course her meeting with GEORGE WASHINGTON. And I loved learning that elements of this one are true, and, that the story is based--perhaps loosely--on the author's family history.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


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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
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I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
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  • 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.

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