At last, a history of the Pilgrims' arrival in America that presents their story as the adventure it truly was. There is enough danger, conflict, and heroism here to capture the attention of the most reluctant reader. And for those already quite familiar with the major events of the story, Edwards provides the kind of telling details that bring the Pilgrims to life as actual people, not just names in a history book. Young readers will find the chapter on "Daily Life at Plymouth" particularly interesting. Girls and boys in the Plymouth colony worked right alongside their parents, keeping crows out of the corn or turning meat on a spit over the fire; schooling consisted of learning to read the Bible. There is, perhaps, a bit too much detail in the early chapters, particularly of the time the Pilgrims spent in Holland. But overall, this book will give children a new understanding of the tremendous risks taken by the early settlers in the New World and a deeper appreciation of the settlers' accomplishments. Though there are not many illustrations, Edwards's inclusion of small excerpts from primary source documents adds another level of interest to the text. This book is one of the many titles in Enslow's "In American History" series. 2003, Enslow Publishers, Ages 9 to 12.
Barbara Carroll Roberts