JOURNEY TO GOLIAD by Melodie A. Cuate


Age Range: 9 - 12
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The historical Battle of Goliad receives an earnest treatment in the latest entry in the Mr. Barrington’s Mysterious Trunk series. When Hannah, her brother and her friend unlock their teacher’s magical luggage, they are transported to the 1836 Texas Revolution. Captured by the Mexican military, the students quickly adapt to their unfamiliar culture and harsh conditions. Compact scenes build to the arresting climax as the trio encounters legendary historical figures. The pacing enhances the dramatic tension as the young historians befriend the Texan soldiers and fight to prevent their predestined massacre. Brief biographical information provides a developed examination of the major historical characters, though the absence of source notes causes discontinuity in the documentation. Occasionally, characterization lacks nuance, and dated dialogue results in a minimal depiction of war’s horrors. While this selection’s strength lies in its examination of its dramatic time, repetitive details cloud the story’s final battle, preventing the formation of a rich, realized setting. (maps, biographical information, Spanish/English translations) (Fantasy/historical fiction. 9-12)

Pub Date: April 15th, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-89672-649-9
Page count: 176pp
Publisher: Texas Tech Univ. Press
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1st, 2009