Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``Sometimes people have to die,'' Margaret's brother tells her, ``so that the rest can live.'' A young German-American, Margaret supports the rebel cause in the American Revolutionary War but hates to see her brothers leave home. Eventually she falls in love with a prisoner quartered with her family, Christian, a German soldier hired by the British. While re-creating the battles at Trenton, Chadd's Ford and Stony Point from Christian's viewpoint (and reflecting on his loyalties), the authors show the effects of the war on Margaret's close-knit family. This is an absorbing historical romance, but though the characters and their times have color and life, the story is occasionally marred by inflated writing (her ``lament resonated through the anguished days'') and too-neat coincidences. Ages 10-14. (October)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 6-8 This historical novel has an interesting and original setting, together with sound historical underpinningsfeatures that almost, but not quite, make up for the routine style in which it is written. Margaret Volpert, whose Pennsylvania family is firmly in the rebel camp during the American Revolution, and Christian Molitor, newly arrived from Germany as part of the Hessian mercenary troops, meet when Christian, wounded and taken prisoner, is paroled into the custody of Margaret's father. He becomes friendly with Margaret's brother John, who has been seriously wounded in the same battle as Christianby Christian, a fact which haunts the Hessian more and more as his feelings for the family, especially Margaret, increase. Near the end of the story, Margaret and Christian warn the rebel forces of a Loyalist plot to defeat them in the coming battle at Stony Point. At the close, Margaret's painful waiting, a continuing theme in the story, goes onthis time for Christian, whom she hopes will survive the war to marry her. As the story rushes to the final events, it becomes more involving, but never quite rises above its authors' inability to provide readers with more than mundane interest in the characters. While a new historical novel for children is always welcome, especially one as well researched as this, it lacks sharp, well-developed characterizations and a vivid prose style. Christine Behrmann, New York Public Lib .