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A young patriot : the American Revolution as experienced by one boy /

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Format: Book
Language: English
Published: Clarion Books, 1996
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Vivid black and white photographs and background details add to the compelling wartime memoirs of Joseph Plumb Martin, a fifteen-year-old Connecticut farm boy who enlisted in the revolutionary army in the summer of 1776.

Review by Booklist Review

Gr. 5^-8. Murphy tells the story of the American Revolution through the eyes of Joseph Plumb Martin, who enlisted in the army in 1776, at the age of 15. Murphy frequently quotes Martin, evidently drawing from Martin's book A Narrative of Some of the Adventures, Dangers, and Sufferings of a Revolutionary Soldier (1830), listed in the extensive bibliography. The lively quotations give Murphy's account a feeling of immediacy, heightened by the many details of life in the army. For instance, few history books for children even mention the mutinies among the American troops, but Murphy vividly explains their causes and consequences, or lack of consequences. He quotes Martin on the mutinous soldiers: "venting our spleen at our country and government, then at our officers, and then at ourselves for our imbecility in staying there and starving . . . for an ungrateful people who did not care what became of us, so they could enjoy themselves while we were keeping a cruel enemy from them." Many black-and-white reproductions of period engravings, paintings, and documents appear throughout the book. Although source notes would have been a welcome addition, young readers researching the military and social history of the American Revolution will find this an excellent resource. --Carolyn Phelan

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 6 Up‘Murphy presents the life of Joseph Plumb Martin, a 15-year-old Connecticut farm boy who enlisted in the Continental Army in 1776. Through well-selected quotes from Martin's self-published memoir, A Narrative of Some of the Adventures, Dangers and Sufferings of a Revolutionary Soldier, readers experience the young soldier's excitement and fear during battle, his boredom while marching, and the deprivation of a winter encampment. The author's compelling writing intertwines major events of the American Revolution with Martin's own story, rendering historical events and military strategy readily comprehensible. The book is generously illustrated with black-and-white maps and reproductions; captions present information that complements rather than repeats the text. Unfortunately, there is neither a map of the colonies from the Hudson to Yorktown, nor a glossary of military terms. Important figures such as Burgoyne, Cornwallis, and Washington are portrayed as individuals as well as military leaders. The index is comprehensive. This volume compares favorably to Doris and Harold Faber's The Birth of a Nation (Scribners, 1989) and is certainly more accessible than Yankee Doodle Boy (Holiday, 1995), an abridged version of Martin's memoir edited by George F. Scheer. An outstanding example of history brought to life through the experience of one individual.‘Lisa Von Drasek, Brooklyn Public Library (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Jim Murphy's nonfiction books have received numerous awards, among them the Sibert Medal, three Orbis Pictus awards, the Margaret A. Edwards award, and two Newbery Honors. Jim also was a finalist for the National Book Award. Born and raised in New Jersey, Jim lives in Maplewood, NJ, with his family.