Sunday, November 13, 2011

The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle

By Avi

Not every thirteen-year-old girl is accused of murder, brought to trial, and found guilty. But I was just such a girl, and my story is worth relating even if it did happen years ago. Be warned, however: if strong ideas and action offend you, read no more. Find another companion to share your idle hours. For my part I intend to tell the truth as I lived it.

This was a fun story by Avi full of mystery and adventure on the high seas. This is a novel about a young girl (13 if I read correctly) that, through a set of strange circumstances, travels alone on a merchant ship from England to her home in America after having finished school to join her family. Her trip is a growing and learning experience. Should she trust the gentlemanly captain of the ship, or should she trust the black cook Zackarias who is rough but friendly? There are many hints and clues that there are things that aren't right on the ship Seahawk- like the men who ran away from the ship on the docks, or how Zacharias thinks Charlotte needs a knife to protect herself, or how the captain asks her to spy on the crew...
This is a fun read that taught me a lot about ships and sailing. There are diagrams in the back so you know what she talks about when she mentions the forelock and the galley. It is an intense read with murder and mystery abounding. I was actually surprised a few times while reading it; you'll enjoy Charlotte's voice.

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