KINGS MOUNTAIN by G. Clifton Wisler


Age Range: 10 - 14
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The fighting during the American Revolutionary War set neighbor against neighbor and family against family and it was in the south that those feelings were especially intense. The battle of Kings Mountain, fought in South Carolina in October of 1780, was a solid British defeat and pivotal to the outcome of the conflict. This story by the veteran writer of historical fiction follows young Frank Livingstone, who would rather sketch than fight and kill. He believes that he can never measure up to the memory of his older brother, who died in a childhood accident. When Frank and his sister travel from their mountain home to their grandmother’s tavern in Camden, they witness first-hand the dangers of life under the British military occupation. Once there, his ability to sketch enemy positions allows him to participate in the patriot cause without having to fire his prized Dickert rifle. An author’s note, background historical information, and a chronology of events help the reader understand the events. However, the actual battle comes so late in the story that it seems anticlimactic, and the real-life heroes and villains of the time are never fully fleshed out. As a coming-of-age story of a boy, there are merits. As historical fiction, there are too many lessons grafted onto the narrative. (Fiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: June 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-688-17813-8
Page count: 160pp
Publisher: HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 2002


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