AWAY TO THE GOLDFIELDS! by Pat Derby

AWAY TO THE GOLDFIELDS!

Age Range: 10 - 13
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Molly, 16, is left with her witless older brother to run their poor New Hampshire farm after their feckless father leaves to find California gold in 1848. She realizes the uselessness of her hard work when she receives a badly stained letter from her father—origin indeterminable; he wants Malachi with him to work. Bravely and with trepidation, she raises money for ship tickets from Boston to San Francisco via the Panama route. The description of the voyage and the overland trek is accurate, but whenever Molly’s fortunes are at their lowest (and they often are) someone steps in to help. In California, she searches for her father with the help of a newly graduated physician, Kevin Doyle, upright, honest, pure, and loyal. Their journeys to small towns and mining camps give a picture of the good, the bad, and the dangerous during this time, but in the end, she realizes she can make an independent life in San Francisco. Sequel, anyone? (Historical fiction. 10-13)

Pub Date: Oct. 12th, 2004
ISBN: 0-374-39961-1
Page count: 256pp
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2004