Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Friends of Liberty by Beatrice Gormley - OPTIONAL

Gormley, Beatrice  Friends of Liberty, 182 pgs.  Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, 2013.  $8.00 Content: Language: G; Mature Content: G; Violence: PG. 
Sally Gifford, the daughter of a shoemaker, and Kitty Lawton, the daughter of a rich merchant, are best friends.  In order to show their commitment to each other, Kitty wants to exchange family heirlooms that were passed down from both of their dead mothers.  Without their fathers knowledge they exchange a gold ring and a pearl pendant, but it doesn’t stay secret for long and when their fathers find out it is just one more contention between the two neighbors.  The Giffords are Whigs and the Lawtons are Tories in the political unrest leading up to the Boston Tea Party and they cross paths in many ways that push Sally’s loyalty to her own family versus her loyalty to her friends. 
This is a very clean historical fiction that will help young readers visualize the colonies during 1773.  I thought the storyline was interesting and adventeresome, but I didn’t really care for the main character.  In her insecurities as a friend, she traded knowledge about her family that put them in danger-not once but twice.  It’s a safe book to put in an elementary and middle school library, but it doesn’t have the wow to keep most young readers attention. 
EL (4-6), MS-OPTIONAL.  Reveiwer, C. Peterson.

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