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Cast Two Shadows: The American Revolution in the South (Great Episodes) Paperback – March 1, 2004


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 - 14 years
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Series: Great Episodes
  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; 1 edition (March 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152050779
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152050771
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #224,532 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Ann Rinaldi's historical novels frequently illustrate the destruction of war through the eyes of the girls and women involved as spectators, victims, and reluctant participants. In Cast Two Shadows, Rinaldi uses the compelling young character Caroline Whitaker to reveal how the Revolutionary War affects life on a South Carolina plantation in 1780. Fourteen-year-old Caroline is caught in the violent web of war--her Patriot father is imprisoned, her Loyalist brother Johnny is wounded, her best friend is hanged by the British before her eyes, and her sister is fast becoming the doxy of the cruel British officer who has commandeered their house. To further complicate matters, although her family chooses to ignore it, Caroline knows that she is the result of her father's dalliance with one of his black slaves. In fact, her grandmother, Miz Melindy, still lives in the slave quarters. When Caroline and Miz Melindy take a long wagon journey together (in an attempt to save Johnny), the young heroine at last comes to terms with the complexity and tumult of her life. (Ages 11 to 16) --Patty Campbell --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 5-9-The prolific Rinaldi's latest piece of historical fiction focuses on the Southern colonies during the American Revolution. War reaches Camden, SC, in 1780, and Caroline Whitaker's privileged world comes undone. For the lively 14-year-old, things are already uncomfortable; her household is split between her beloved brother Johnny's Loyalist military service and her father's unabashed support for the Patriots. In rapid succession, Caroline then witnesses the brutal execution of a childhood friend, sees her father imprisoned for refusing to declare loyalty to King George, and, along with her mother and sister, becomes a prisoner in their own home when British troops occupy the plantation. The stress, fear, and confusion bring to light one of the family's greatest secrets: Caroline's birth mother, whom she never knew, was a slave in the Whitaker household. When word comes of Johnny's court-martial and brutal punishment, Caroline undertakes a journey to bring him home, accompanied by her maternal grandmother, Miz Melindy, a slave who is also a skilled healer. Both expect to face danger, but neither of them anticipates how significant their travels will be for Caroline's future. Rinaldi has incorporated prodigious historical research and provocative themes to produce a deftly plotted and fast-paced novel.
Starr E. Smith, Marymount University Library, Arlington, VA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

ANN RINALDI is an award-winning author best known for bringing history vividly to life. A self-made writer and newspaper columnist for twenty-one years, Ms. Rinaldi attributes her interest in history to her son, who enlisted her to take part in historical reenactments up and down the East Coast. She lives with her husband in central New Jersey.

Customer Reviews

The story moved along well, up until the very end.
McBug
I liked this book very much and it taught me many interesting facts about the American Revolution.
Daniel Hushla
Cast Two Shadows is an amazing book, quite possibly Ann Rinaldi's best.
Jennifer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 14, 2004
Format: Paperback
When my eighth grade English teacher told my class that we had to read a historical fiction book for a book project, I thought I was doomed. I didn't particularly want to read a book about boring history. I searched and searched everywhere for an exciting book that I would like and finally I found the book Cast Two Shadows by Ann Rinaldi. I had heard Ann Rinaldi was a terrific writer, so I thought I would give this book a try. I am very glad I picked this book because it is definately not just a boring historical book.

The book took place in Camden, South Carolina, just after the Revolutionary War had arrived there. It is about a fourteen-year-old girl named Caroline Witaker and how her world has been turned upsidedown because of the war. Her Patriot father who is the leading rebel in Camden has just been taken off to jail by the British and her brother is off fighting for the British on the opposite side of the war. Her best friend has just been hung by the British and her sister has fallen in love with the British officer who took over Caroline's house. Throughout this book, Caroline is forced to face conflicts within herself and make tough decisions that will impact her life and the life of her family forever.

I enjoyed this book very much and thought it was certainly worth my time. The beginning was a little bit slow and kind of confusing, but once I got past the first few chapters, the story got really exciting and it didn't want to put it down. The book had a good plot, was very interesting, and actually helped me learn a lot about our country's history without it being boring. It taught me so much about the Revolutionary War that I probably would have never known and it helped me to understand what life was like back then.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Melanie on January 2, 2001
Format: Paperback
"Cast Two Shadows: The American Revolution in the South" was another great novel by Ann Rinaldi, and a very good novel on the Revolutionary War!
Caroline, 14, lives with her mixed Patriot/Loyalist family in South Carolina around 1780. Her life begins to change drastically then; her friend, Kit, is hanged for trying to attack Cornwallis, her father is in jail for being a Patriot, her brother, who was at war, needs her to help him, Loyalists are taking over her home, her sister is getting to be friends - very good friends - with a British soldier, and she's also beginning to know her slave grandmother.
This book told a good story, with quite a bit of truth in it, about the interesting times of the Revolutionary War. I'd definitely recommend it for anyone ages 12 and up wanting an exciting read! I'd also recommend "A Wolf by the Ears" and "Time Enough for Drums", two other novels by Rinaldi, and definitely the movie "The Patriot" as it is about some of these very places, people, and events mentioned in this book.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Caitlyn Tekko Payne on March 22, 2001
Format: Paperback
When reading literature on the American Revolution, it is rare to find a book placed in the southeast during that time period. Even more rare is a book dealing with a mixed race family of the time. Ann Rinaldi covers both topics well in her book Cast Two Shadows. The protagonist, Caroline, is a girl of both African and white descent, with a slave mother and white father. Her father's white family embraces Caroline as a daughter when her slave mother disappears, under strange circumstances.
When Caroline is fourteen, the Revolutionary War comes to the South. Her family's home is invaded by British soldiers, and Caroline, her mother, and her sister are put under house arrest. Her brother Johnny and father are away, fighting on opposite sides of the revolution. Johnny is Loyalist, the father, a Patriot. Word reaches the household that Johnny has been wounded. Caroline is released from house arrest to "fetch her brother home." Accompanying Caroline on her journey is her slave grandmother Miss Melindy. Caroline rarely speaks to her grandmother and has no idea how to deal with being in the woman's presence. On the course of the journey, her grandmother begins to tell her stoires, and Caroline learns about her heritage, her family, and why her slave mother disappeared. When Caroline returns home, many thigs have changed, and she is not the same person who started the journey. The book deals with the subject of mixed slave/white families very well. The Revolution is also covered well, with the focus on how the British soldiers treated families in the souhteastern part of the country and what resulted from the invasion. This is a great book to read for an unusual look at the American Rwvolution, and a side of the war that is often overlooked in history books.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 31, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This book was probobly one of the best novels I have ever read. It is historical fiction, so you benifit by learning new facts about the American Revolution, without boring yourself to death. The devestating circumstances that the Whitaker family have to deal with are vividly described by the author and will bring tears to your eyes. The realistic 1700's drama is a real page-turner. I would reccomend this book for a young adult. Overall, Cast Two Shadows is a brillant work by Ann Rinaldi.
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