Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Witch of Blackbird Pond

Kit Tyler is making the journey from Barbados to Connecticut on The Dolphin, but while being rowed ashore, she dives into the river to retrieve a child's toy, which begins her troubles.  Kit is traveling to her Aunt Rachel's home after the death of her grandfather, but she is arriving unannounced.  Now, this carefree young woman must bend to the strict ways of her Puritan extended family.  Her life gets a little more interesting when she finds that William, a wealthy young man in her community, has intentions of courting her, while her beautiful cousin Judith has set her sights upon John Holbrook, the new ministry student.  This new life is difficult for Kit, but she finds an unlikely friend in Hannah, the so called witch who lives in the meadow, and her friend, Nat from The Dolphin.  Kit finds herself in danger, but by keeping her head about herself and staying true to her upbringing, she comes out of all her trouble better for it.

After my reading of The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, this seemed like a natural choice.  It's another Newbery, although older with a publication date of 1958.  I had passed by this book quite often in the library while straightening or shelving and always wanted to read it, but I never made the time before.  I'm quite glad that I did.  I found that this was a lovely historical fiction that wasn't as dry as I feared.  I think that with the right encouragement, this could find a place with today's readers and it certainly has connections to history units on religious persecution.  

Also, a note on the cover.  This is the cover that I read, although there are some much better covers out there.  I would highly recommend updating your copy to get more checkouts.   Surprisingly, the paperback cover from 1978 is my favorite, but there are others that will look much nicer than the original 1958 cover, so update if possible to attract a new readership.

This was another snow day read.  If this weather keeps up, I'll be through my To Read list in no time!

Happy Reading!

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