The Fair American
The Fair American. In this book, Five Bushel Farm is prospering on one side of the Atlantic Ocean, but there is turmoil and destruction on its other side. When Sally sails, with Andrew and her Aunt Debbie, to France on the Fair American, she is unexpectedly drawn into the sorrows of a land at war with itself. Pierre, son of an aristocrat killed in the French Revolution, fleeing with his former servant Jean, makes these difficulties suddenly and dangerously personal to Sally and to those sailing on the Fair American. Like the young United States from which she comes, Sally is faced with new challenges and new opportunities. The author's poetry and the illustrations of Caldecott Honor Award- winning Helen Sewell lend additional grace to this buoyant tale. Recommended for ages 8 and up. Copyright 1940. Softcover. 5.5 x 8.5 inches. 137 pp.
Comments on this book by Dr. Mary Kay Clark: Elizabeth Coatsworth won a Newbery Medal for a different book, but this is definitely filled with adventure which boys will like as well as girls. The first half of the book concerns the adventures of Pierre, a French boy from a noble family whose father was killed during the French Revolution and who is trying to escape from France. He must disguise himself as he walks through the countryside, meeting dangerous people while trying to reach a seaport where he hopes to board a ship to freedom. In the second half of the book, Pierre struggles to learn how to be a cabin boy on a ship. Pierre has several adventures on the ship and learning life aboard a ship during a time when the British were the enemies of France. Pierre is especially sympathetic when they take on a British deserter, a seaman who swims to their ship for freedom. There is a dangerous episode as a French captain boards their ship. Pierre makes friends with Sally and other people on the ship, which is called The Fair American.
This book was sold as part of the 3 book set entitled The Five Bushel Farm Series, also known as The Sally Series, but all the other books in the series are now out of print. Some may be available as e-books from Bethlahem Books.
This book is part of a treasury of wholesome, character-building literature from Bethlehem Books.
- Coatsworth, Elizabeth