Book Review ~ The Witch of Blackbird Pond

I’m sorry I wasn’t able to get this put up yesterday.  I’m blaming the holiday (but just between you and me, it had much more to do with me just not wanting to write *sheepish grin*).

Our library put on a reading program recently and Lucy, Michael, and I all got to choose a free book as a prize.  I recognized The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare.  I had heard of it before, though I didn’t know much about it, and I had read Miss Speare’s other books, The Bronze Bow*, Calico Captive, and The Sign of the Beaver.  None of the other books the library had to choose from looked promising, so I picked it up.

I probably wouldn’t have read this book otherwise, but it I’m so glad I did; I very much enjoyed it!  There were several things that I worried about during the middle–nothing that I thought was bad, just things that tend to make me dislike books–but Miss Speare resolved them quite well.  I felt perfectly at peace at the end of the book.  I did find it rather predictable; I don’t know if that’s because I had read all of Miss Speare’s other books, or if it was just predictable.  I know that might bother some people, but I didn’t mind it–though I don’t usually mind when I know how something ends!

This book is historical fiction, and takes place in America, before the Revolution.  There were a few hard topics mentioned, slavery and witch trials, so I wouldn’t recommend it for very young children, but the issues were handled well.  They were not disturbing or very graphic.  There was also a lot of romance, which I also noticed in Calico Captive, Miss Speare’s other book with a female main character (in both books she receives a proposal from three different men).  It was very well-handled though–if any one of the girls had married the wrong man it would have ruined the whole book, but I loved all the couples that she brought together!  It was perfect. *happy sigh*  Anyway, moving on:

The story is about a sixteen-year-old girl from the Caribbean, who is forced to move to Connecticut to join her aunt’s family, after the death of her grandfather.  Katharine or “Kit” Tyler finds it hard to cope with the hard work and stiff rules of her aunt and uncle’s Puritan family and community.  In her loneliness, Kit can hardly help but accept any offer of friendship, but is suddenly confronted with the fact that her new-found companions could put her in danger.

“Nothing, child,” whispered Rachel.  “They won’t do anything to you.  We’ll think of something.”  But she had not spoken fast enough–that little sobbing catch of breath had answered first. (204)

Overall, I would definitely recommend this book!  Calico Captive was not my favorite, but I loved both her other books, and The Witch of Blackbird Pond has joined them as some of my favorite books!

Miss Speare has risen to my list of favorite authors–up there with Tolkien and Dickens, folks.  I love her stories!  She writes mostly early-America historical fiction, which is generally not my favorite, but her writing-style and her characters are just amazing!  I couldn’t tell you what exactly she did that caught my attention, but she did it alright.

Have any of you read The Witch of Blackbird Pond before?  What did you think?  (And how is my book review? 😉 )


*I realized I have no book review of here for The Bronze Bow!  How did that happen?  I shall have to remedy that soon.

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