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UNCOMMON FAITH by Trudy Krisher


by Trudy Krisher

Pub Date: Oct. 15th, 2003
ISBN: 0-8234-1791-3
Publisher: Holiday House

Krisher’s mesmerizing read takes place from the summer of 1837 to the fall of 1838 in Millbrook, Massachusetts. A chorus of voices narrates (a chart/genealogy at the front helps keep the many townsfolk straight) as the point of view shifts. Even in a small town, there’s much diversity: the childless Jacob and Hetty White are Quakers; John Common is a Methodist minister though his angry father-in-law Calvin is a Congregationalist; the black freedman Rufus Thomas makes his way by doing what needs done. The Faith of the title is an angry and spirited girl who doesn’t understand why book-learning is denied her but urged upon her brothers. A cast of drunken husbands and wise or foolish or compassionate older women round out a tale that opens with a tragic barn fire and closes with the origins of Mount Holyoke and the hidden courage of the Underground Railroad. (Fiction. 12-14)