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Speare, Elizabeth
New York : Dell, 1987.
IL 5-8 RL 7.4
ISBN 0395071143

(2 booktalks)

Booktalk #1

Kit Tyler reaches Connecticut colony in 1687 on brig Dolph from Barbados where she has grown in style with well read grandfather. She lives with her aunt and cousins and is introduced to stark life of making flax, cornmeal and fires for soap making. She befriends an old Quaker woman, Hannah Tupper, as does Nat Eaton, the captain's son. Kit is accused of witchery and Nat comes to her rescue when her own fiance ignores her need. She goes off with Nat as he readies his new boat and leaves her family after having successfully brought Hannah to safety and her cousin out of sickness. This is a good book to get a sense of colonial life.

Booktalk #2

                    When her grandfather dies, Katherine “Kit” Tyler leaves the prosperous life she has known in Barbados to live with her aunt in the Connecticut Colony in April of 1687. Kit has been raised to be a free spirit and has a hard time understanding the closed minds and prejudice of the Puritans. She has a major adjustment to make as her new surroundings are bleak, and the Puritan ways are oppressive compared to her life in the Caribbean. When Kits meets the Widow Tupper, a Quaker who is believed to practice witchcraft, they become close friends and Kit visits often to find refuge from the loneliness she feels in her new life. Their friendship has unexpected consequences, however, when Kit is accused of also being a witch after helping the Widow Tupper escape from the angry townspeople. Called before the town council, Kit is accused of actions and works of the devil which supposedly have caused illness and death to fall upon many innocent children of the town. Banishment, hanging or branding is sure to follow, a fitting punishment for one accused if witchcraft. Is there anyone who will step forward to prove her innocence and rescue this young and adventurous colonial misfit?
                    Relive the harsh and rigid customs of this 1600 New England Colony and come to understand that prejudice and ignorance can have dire consequences regardless of the time period. The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare. 1959 Newbery Award Winner.  (Marsha Carlan., Benton Elementary School)

SUBJECTS:     New England  -- Fiction
                        Witchcraft -- New England  -- Fiction
                        Puritans  -- Fiction
                        Prejudices  -- Fiction


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