JUST JANE by William Lavender


A Daughter of England Caught in the Struggle of the American Revolution
Age Range: 12 & up
Email this review


It’s 1776 and Lady Jane Prentice, the 14-year-old daughter of the Third Earl of Almesbury, has moved to Charleston, South Carolina. Now she’s just Jane, having dropped her aristocratic title to fit the spirit of the times. But which spirit? Cousin Hugh is a rebel, Uncle Robert is a staunch Loyalist, and her schoolteacher, Simon Cordwyn, says he is a moderate. The idea of independence horrifies Jane: “wouldn’t that be treason?” It soon becomes clear that Jane’s story will parallel the story of her adopted land. Will her future be to “become the wife of some carefully selected son of a good Carolina family and go live in a big house,” or will she, like the colonies, declare her independence and make her own choices, using her own judgment? By 1780, Jane has grown into a beautiful young woman, the war has come South, and the British have occupied Charleston. Jane is forced to make choices and swear allegiances as she is caught up in the swirl of history-making events. Lavender makes both stories—the personal and the political—real and immediate. There is romance and intrigue, and the dialogue is handled well. If there’s a bit too much telling of history, it’s a lively story nevertheless. The brief bibliography is not up-to-date and will not be especially useful to readers wanting to learn more about the Revolution in the South. For fans of sprawling, romantic historical fiction. (glossary, bibliography) (Historical fiction. 12+)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-15-202587-1
Page count: 288pp
Publisher: Gulliver/Harcourt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15th, 2002


IndieA Buss From Lafayette by Dorothea Jensen
by Dorothea Jensen