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Indian Captive Paperback – May 6, 1994

157 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

''Vivid and moving.'' --Horn Book Magazine --This text refers to the MP3 CD edition.

About the Author

In addition to illustrating the first four Betsy-Tacy books, Lois Lenski (1893-1974) was the 1946 Newberry Medal winning author of Strawberry Girl.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 and up
  • Paperback: 298 pages
  • Publisher: HarperColl (May 6, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039730076X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0397300761
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.2 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (157 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,972,669 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

67 of 67 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 31, 2000
Format: Paperback
I have enjoyed Lois Lenski's books since I was a girl back in the 50's, but this is one of her best. Based on a true life narrative, INDIAN CAPTIVE chronicles the psychological journey from white girl to a young Seneca woman. In fact Mary Jemison (kidnapped at 15) became known, respected and loved as the White Woman of the Genesee. Lenski recreates her struggle to maintain her English heritage in the face of Native American beliefs and traditions--all depicted honestly, fairly, without bias to either side in this 18th century culture-clash.
Lenski devotes much time to research each of her books--usually about a different rural area of America. Her excellent b/w illustrations enhance our reading enjoyment and appreciation for the material culture of the Senecas--one of the Five Nations under the Iroquois banner.
During her first two years of captivity (as a replacement for a dead clansman), Molly recalls her parents' last words to her when she and a neighbor boy were given moccasins and roughly marched off (before her entire family was butchered on the trail). Her pa assured her that her golden hair would endear her to the Indians; in fact she was called Corn Tassel. She also kept her ma's words in her heart: to be brave, to be flexible and accept her situation with grace; to practice her English in secret and never forget her name, her family or her Bible teachings.
Molly's loyalties were tested many times over the years, for she hated the thought of becoming an Indian. Yet can a 12-year-old girl (Lenski makes her younger) live long in an emotional vacuum? Respect, gratitude and friendship gradually slip into her heart despite herself. Will she ever relinquish her dream to escape back to white civilization?
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35 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Debbra J. Winans on January 15, 2001
Format: Paperback
I can remember pulling this book out of the library in elementary school many many times. I just loved reading the story of Mary Jemison. Now that I am adult, I am very happy to be able to add this book to my collection. It is a story that is simple enough for children to grasp, but emotionally-gripping enough to keep adults reading. I believe it is an honest story. It explains much about how the Indians lived at the time, as compared to the somewhat more modern experiences that Mary had at home. It explains the ways of the Indians and chronicles the violence of the time, but retains the humanity of these people and what they believed. The reader learns all these things through Mary's eyes, and lives through her grief at the loss of her family and all that was familiar to her. Then, slowly, how she comes to befriend and even love her new Indian family. I would recommend this book highly to every child to get a good feel of the history of the Indians and their beliefs.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Maryam on October 17, 2001
Format: Paperback
Mary (Molly) Jemison lived a normal life on her farm in Pennsylvania where her family harvested corn. Her father didn't believe that Indians would ever come to their home as their neighbors said, but one day that is exactly what happened. Molly was having a normal day when a band of Indians came. Everyone in Molly's family was captured. Molly and her family had to walk for miles on end. Finally they stopped at a place where Molly was seperated from her family and was being taken with the Indians to become one of them. It was hard for Molly to adapt to her surroundings and she missed her family greatly. The Indians gave Molly the name, Corn Tassel, because of her long yellow hair. Molly was depressed at first and tried to run away a multiple of times. This book definitely a 5 star rating and it never got tedious.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 3, 1998
Format: Paperback
"Indian Captive" by Lois Lenski is a book I read as a young girl when I lived in Shaker Heights, Ohio. Although I haven't seen a copy of the book in almost 50 years, I can still recall the story and the drawings by Lois Lenski vividly. No other author of children's books, has, in my opinion had as distinctive style as that of Lois Lenski. I think that my lifelong passion for pioneer days and ways was fostered by Indian Captive. The little tow-headed girl who so fascinated the Indians; the difficulty that Mary endured, and finally staying--had quite an impact on my young, impressionable mind. I now live in Canada, where books about American girls and American Indians are, understandably, not a big attraction. Recently during a conversation I found myself longing to see a copy of "Indian Captive" -- and to show it and read it to my 7 year old granddaughter. So-- thank you Lois Lenski, for adding a dimension to my life!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on April 21, 2005
Format: Paperback
I liked the book Indian captive because it was full of history and was based on a true story. It really showed the ways and the ideas of the Indians and how they weren't that bad, they just wanted to love and protect their people. I have read a couple others about Indian captives but I like this one the best because the author took so much time explaining how molly felt.

The book is about Molly Jemison who is taken away from her family when the Indians take over her house. They take her to become an Indian and rename her Corn Tassel for her yellow hair. She has to learn the Indian language and ways and find out where her soul is, with the whites or the Indian tribe. The book is about a white girl living in an Indian village and her journey to accepting her new life.

I recommended this book to history lovers like myself who love to learn about the past, the Indian and colonial times. This book sometimes goes on a subject and takes a long time to get back to the story or answer a question, which I found difficult.
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