Johnny Tremain

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Overview

Johnny Tremain, winner of the 1943 Newbery Medal, is one of the finest historical novels ever written for children. As compelling today as it was fifty years ago, to read this riveting novel is to live through the defining events leading up to the American Revolutionary War seen through the eyes of a boy who turns in his smithing tools to take up a rifle and fight for the liberty of America.

Fourteen-year old Johnny Tremain, an apprentice silversmith with a bright future ahead ...

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Lynd Ward 1987 Soft cover New. No Dust Jacket New 1987 Copyright In Softcover Format, Johnny Tremain-A Novel For Young And Old With Illustrations, 256 Pages, Pictorial Light ... Blue, Red And Gold Cover And Possible Light Shelf Wear, This Softcover Novel Is Awarded The John Newbery Medal (1987 Copyright) Read more Show Less

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Johnny Tremain

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Overview

Johnny Tremain, winner of the 1943 Newbery Medal, is one of the finest historical novels ever written for children. As compelling today as it was fifty years ago, to read this riveting novel is to live through the defining events leading up to the American Revolutionary War seen through the eyes of a boy who turns in his smithing tools to take up a rifle and fight for the liberty of America.

Fourteen-year old Johnny Tremain, an apprentice silversmith with a bright future ahead of him, injures his hand in a tragic accident, forcing him to look for other work. In his new job as a horse-boy, riding for the patriotic newspaper, the Boston Observer, and as a messenger for the Sons of Liberty, he encounters John Hancock, Samuel Adams, and Dr. Joseph Warren. Soon Johnny is involved in the pivotal events shaping the American Revolution from the Boston Tea Party to the first shots fired at Lexington.

Powerful illustrations by American artist Michael McCurdy, bring new life to Ether Forbes' quintessential novel of the American Revolution.

After injuring his hand, a silversmith's apprentice in Boston becomes a messenger for the Sons of Liberty in the days before the American Revolution.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
To read Johnny Tremain is to live through two dramatic years of our country's history, and to see these great events through the shrewd eyes of an observant boy. After injuring his hand, this silversmith's apprentice in Boston becomes a messenger for the Sons of Liberty in the days before the American Revolution. His new role brings Johnny Tremain in contact with the great men of history: John Hancock, John and Samuel Adams, and other Boston patriots. The story leads up to the Tea Party and Battle of Lexington. Ward has sharpened the drama of the story by adding full-page illustrations. 1944 Newbery Award.
From the Publisher
"This is Esther Forbes at her brilliant best. She has drawn the character of Johnny with such sympathy and insight that he may take his place with Jim Hawkins, Huck Finn and other young immortals."  —BookWeek
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780440442509
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 4/28/1980
  • Series: Yearling Newbery Series
  • Pages: 336
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 840L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.23 (w) x 7.68 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Meet the Author

Esther Forbes (1891-1967) garnered a Newbery Medal and an enduring place in children's literature with the publication of Johnny Tremain. Her adult novel, Paul Revere and the World He lived In, won the Pulitzer Prize for history in 1942.

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Read an Excerpt

On rocky islands gulls woke. Time to be about their business. Silently they Rooted in on the town, but when their icy eyes sighted die first dead fish, Am bits of garbage about the ships and wharves they began to scream and quarrel.

The cocks in Boston back yards bad long before cried the coming of day. Now the hens were also awake, scratching, clucking, laying eggs.

Cats in malt houses, granaries, ship holds, mansions and hovels caught a last mouse, settled down to wash their for and deep. Cats did not work by day.
In stables, horses shook their halters and whinnied.

In barns, cows lowed to be milked.

Boston, slowly opened its eyes, stretched, and woke. The sun struck in horizontally from the cad, flashing upon weathervanes -- brass cocks and arrows, here a glass-eyed Indian, there, a copper grasshopper - and the bells in the steeples cling-clanged, telling the people, it was time to be up and about.

In hundreds of houses sleepy women woke sleepier children Get up and to work. Ephraim, get to the pump, fetch Mother water Ann, got to the barn, milk the cow and drive her to the Common. Start the fire Silas. Put on a dean shirt, James. Dolly, it you aren't up before I count ten...

And so, in a crooked little house at the head of Hancock' on crowded Fish Street, Mrs. Lapham stood at the foot of a ladder leading to the attic where her fathe-in-law's apprentices slept. These boys were luckier than most apprentices. Their master was too feeble to climb 1adders; the middle-aged mistress too stout. It was only her bellows that could penetrate to their quarters -- not her heavy hands.

"Boys?"

Noanswer.

"Dove?"

"Coming, ma'am! Dove turned over for one more snooze.

Frustrated, she shook the ladder she was too heavy to climb. She wished she could shake "them limbs of Satan."

Copyright 1987 by Esther Forbes
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 256 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(118)

4 Star

(48)

3 Star

(25)

2 Star

(15)

1 Star

(50)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 256 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 15, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    This Book Is a Classic

    I write this review as a retired teacher. This book, historical fiction, is a Newbery Medal Winner, and is typically found on the reading list for grades 6 though 8. Esther Forbes does an excellent job of blending her fictional characters with the famous figures we have come to know from history in Boston during the period leading up to the Revolution. It is a coming-of-age story on two levels: Fictionally, it deals with an insecure and immature fourteen-year-old seeking to find his roots and his way in life. We believe that Johnny makes an interesting character for kids from eleven through fourteen to relate to, because his negative attitude in the beginning makes him somewhat unattractive. Consequently, he gets very little sympathy when he needs it the most. Fortunately for Johnny, he latches onto a genuine human being named Rab, who becomes his mentor and role model. It is really heartwarming to see how Rab's kindness works as counseling that rearranges Johnny's thinking, which in turn, causes Johnny to work to correct his own behavior. You can't help but love Rab! By the end of the book, sixteen-year-old Johnny has emerged as a responsible, caring, self-respecting young man who has also acquired respect for others. And like Rab, he too, has become lovable.

    On a historical level, this story deals with America's coming of age. The colonies are outgrowing the Mother Country. In Boston, Sam Adams and his Committee of Correspondence members are paving the way for independence. The Sons of Liberty are rebelling against King George III, in a manner not unlike that of a two-year-old rebelling against parents. "If I don't get my way, I'm going to make you pay. I'll dump your tea into the sea." Had King George III been less of a tyrant, and Sam Adams less of a rebel, would we be the United States today? (Interestingly, underneath King George III's portrait hanging in the British Museum is a line labeling him as the ruler who cost England her American colonies.)

    I see reading this book as an opportunity for students to increase their word power. Underlining unknown words and making a list of them to look up in the dictionary is the way to learn new words. Words like Whigs, Tories, and apprentice will be easily learned from usage. Also, if this book is required reading for a reluctant reader, I strongly recommend buying the audio version to use in conjunction with the reading. The audio comes unabridged on CDs and makes an excellent supplement for reading improvement, because reading and listening at the same time is twofold learning. This book has too much to offer in both history and fictional character development to not support it completely. It deserves the Newbery medal it received.

    11 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2012

    AWESOME BOOK

    If you don't know the vocab in this book, tap and hold. It will give you options at the bottom, and click on "look up".

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 31, 2012

    Best book ever

    This has been the best book that i have ever read. I am a fifth grader reading this book at the current time. We are on the chapter, the boston observer, and it is very good so far. I would reccomend this book for advanced fourth and up graders. It is a joy to read so if you are bored, do not know what to do, then you can just pick this book up and read it.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2010

    Insight on Tremain

    Introduction
    Johnny is a young man whom seeks out to be a skilled silversmith. He becomes Mr. Lapham's apprentice, who has two other youth apprentices who tend to get in Johnny's way with their pranks, laziness and insults.


    Description and summary of main points
    Sometime after Johnny has his accident, he goes off to look for a different trade. Soon he finds a job that could fit him, and a friend too. Eventually, he takes the job and joins him in the secret union which that friend is in.


    Evaluation
    Johnny Tremain was quite an interesting book. It showed me how life was like back in those days for a young apprentice when bad luck runs a muck. I wasn't pleased reading it the whole way through, but it had it's moments where it was pleasing. There were moments where I wanted to keep reading the book.


    Final review
    Johnny Tremain is a book I would recommend. It was a above average book, but not perfect. It had some of its flaws, but all in all, It was something that is worth your time. I give it a 4 out of 5.

    6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2005

    history buff's fantasy!!

    the first time i read this book i was in fifth grade, and i didn't understand a thing! (i was forced to read it that time) but then i began to love history alot more, especially the american revolution. i went back in eighth grade to read it over the summer and i loved it!! it makes a huge difference if you can understand the vocabulary and if you are a history buff, like me!!

    6 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2012

    Should have never been published. (No offense Esther Forbes.)

    Worst book ever. Period.

    5 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2012

    Anonymous

    I read the book and saw the movie and the book was so much better than the movie! Now I understand why my teachers always made us read the book before we watched the movie! LOVED IT!!!!!!!:D

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 3, 2012

    Had to read this book for a book club....

    And it stunk. I did not understand it and it was a long boring read. I would not recommend it.

    4 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 26, 2005

    EWWW! DON'T EVER READ THIS!

    This was the worst book I ever read, and it was so boring. My teacher made me read it last year, and I hated it so much.

    4 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2012

    Bleh

    This book STINKS!

    3 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2014

    Great Book

    This book was very fun and I enjoyed reading every page. This book tells abou tthe American Revolution in a cool way! Read this book!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 15, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    If you like historical stories, you'll love this.

    I truly enjoyed this book with its historic time frame and the lessons on being arrogant and then learning to be humble. It tells a great story about a funny kid who reminds me of an old friend who now lives in Oregon. Being set in the Revalutionar war drew my interest to this book. I love to read and watch tv shows about history and things that happened during the various time frames. Even though I don't like reading, I enjoyed this book and would read it again.

    The story is about a 14 year old moves in with a family, the Lapham's to be an apprentice to a silversmith. The mom is determined he will also marry her daughter. Becoming so skilled, he became arrogant and bullies the other kids in the house.

    Johnny's fame as a silversmith takes a turn for the better and is asked to do an elaborate silver basin for a wealthy merchant. He also tells the daughter, Cilla that he is related to a wealthy Boston merchant. Not happy with the results of silver basin's handles. He created a mold for a perfect set of handles. One of the sons decided to play a practical joke that would forever change Johnny's life. His hands were burned and disfigured. Mrs. Lapham complains about feeding him, and that she no longer would allow him to marry her daughter.

    Johnny searches for work at a Boston Newspaper telling how his hands became damaged and was promised a job delivering papers if he could find no other work.

    Depressed he decides to contact his wealthy relative. He produced a silver cup given to him by his mom and was told he stole it and was arrested. After going to trial, he was cleared of the charge.

    Down on his luck, he went back to the newspaper to ask for the delivery job. He becomes friendly with the key members in politics and is transformed from a political bystander into an ardent Whig. He participates in the Boston Tea Party. He slowly changes from a selfish arrogant child into a selfless idealistic man.

    The book teaches you about history during that time period and life challenges. That your life can change in a heartbeat.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 30, 2014

    Hi

    This book is amazing so far. Of course I'm only a little more than half way but it is emosewa. (Awesome spelled backwards meaning double awesome.) I give it 5 stars because it is well written, has a good story, and is historical and thats just the tip of the iceberg. I would very much recomend it :)


    By: The Awesome Reviws

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 12, 2014

    Johnny Tremain has no family or no relatives. Johnny lives with

    Johnny Tremain has no family or no relatives. Johnny lives with the Laphems on a farm. He is a silversmith apprentice. Until he burns his hand in hot silver. He leaves the Laphems looking for work. Then he finds Rab. Rab is a printers boy who prints newspapers. Since Johnny is looking for work Rab gives him a job to deliver papers. Rab works with the sons of liberty and Johnny gets involved very quickly. He eventually volunteers to help with the boston tea party.

    I think this book was good. The author really gives you an idea of the setting. For example the wharf bustling with lots of people, vender, and slaves. Plus you really get an idea of what the characters look like and how they act. For example Johnny, he is cocky and brags about himself until he burns his hand. I think this book it is full good characters and good characters and good places.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2013

    Highly Recommend

    Johnny Tremain is a wonderful book for a 10 or 11 year old who is studying the Revolutionary War in school.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 3, 2013

    #BESTBOOKEVER!

    This is a WAAAAAAY awesome book, amd i am a 7th grader.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2013

    Suck si bad

    The worst book ive ever read

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 22, 2013

    This book sucks so bad dnt read it!

    Way boring, but it might be fun if you like falling asleep during reading class! otherwise dont read it!

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 3, 2012

    y

    I find the book hard to follow for 6th grade

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 30, 2010

    Colleen Review

    Introduction
    Everybody loved Johnny Tremain except Dove. He had the hands of an artist and a mind of an adult. As young as he is he keeps all of his housemates in order and they abide by him with some rude comments. Mr.Lapham has taught him many things to being a silversmith.

    Description and summary of main points
    Then a tragity happened to young Johnny. Rushing to make Hancock's a sugar Basin, his hand got severely burned for the fault to blame is Dove. His hand is useless and now he has to struggle with out a useful hand for the rest of his life. Nobody will hire him and Mrs.Lapham doesn't favor him. Life is going no where

    Evaluation
    I believe that Johnny's life came tumbling down and that i look up to him for the dedication he has for what he believes in.


    My final review
    This book is absolutely described as a fun educational reading. Definitely, I am recommending this to others. Especially other teachers because I am a student and is thrilled that i got assigned this book because This is way better than a history book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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