Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Review: The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle

The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle
The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle by Avi

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Rich had picked this book up from the library several weeks ago and told me that I had to read it as soon as he closed the back cover. I'd been putting it off for awhile, having several other books that were higher on my priority list (requests that needed to go back to the library). Yesterday, I decided that it was the time for me to settle in and read it.

Charlotte Doyle is a 13 year old girl, just out of finishing school in England, and on her way back to her family home in Providence, RI. Her father has arranged passage for her on a ship belonging to the company he works for, arranging for two other families to travel at the same time. But when Charlotte arrives at the boat, she finds that the other families are unable to travel and she will be the loan female on a boat full of men. What follows is a tale that moves from fear to adventure and takes this well-brought-up girl from her high society beginnings into a world she could have never imagined.

Overall a good story, the beginning seemed a bit slow to me. It took me awhile to warm up to Charlotte and her story. It wasn't until the mutiny were ready to begin that I really became enraptured and knew I would want to finish it that night.

The writing was very evocative, making it easy to mentally put yourself on a sailing ship in the 19th century. I could feel the cramped quarters, the sparseness of the cabin that Charlotte is first settled into. The main characters are very well written, each with their own quirks. The minor characters in the story aren't quite as fleshed out (many of the sailors seem indistinguishable from one another), but it doesn't detract from the overall story.

The book is a fairly quick read, one that I finished within about 3 hours. It's good for a rainy afternoon when you want to lose yourself somewhere that is far removed from your cozy chair.

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