From Publishers Weekly
Two tales of trickery and exaggeration by the Newbery Medalist feature adventures in the Old West and during the California Gold Rush. Ages 8-12.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From School Library Journal
Grade 4-7–Listeners are in for a treat with this satisfying reading of Sid Fleischman's novel (Little, 1963). Brimming with riveting adventure, the story is set during the Gold Rush. The fast-moving plot follows the high spirited young Jack and his aunt's faithful butler, Praiseworthy, as they set out to strike it rich in order to support the financially strapped and beloved Aunt Arabella. As Jack and the loyal butler travel by sea and land, the pair meet a series of memorable characters such as the daring, crusty sea Captain Swain and the diabolical Cut-Eye Higgins. The individual personalities of the characters are reflected through the expressive voices rendered by the large cast of 24 readers. Jack and Praiseworthy are the most well-rounded characters. While some of the readers use more expression than others, Willard E. Lape, Jr.'s strong narration is crisp and well-paced. Bouncy folk-style music, appropriate to the historical setting, separates each chapter. This entertaining production is a worthy purchase for libraries with large children's audio collections.–Lynn K. Vanca, Akron-Summit County Public Library, OH
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