Adventure at Brimstone Hill (Unabridged)
Ottley-Mitchell's pirates do not exactly come across as bloodthirsty and swashbuckling; the three children certainly don't find the pirates threatening and seem eager to help them. In fact, Ottley-Mitchell's pirates are somewhat idealized and more could have been done to acknowledge some of the faults of these historical figures.
The Caribbean Adventure Series is a noteworthy contribution to Caribbean children's literature if only for its cultural authenticity, evident in its attention to the authenticating details of language and everyday life in the Caribbean countries portrayed. For example, Caribbean children will recognize the "Ovaltine biscuits and guava cheese" Mark's mother packs for him to eat on the plane ride to Jamaica, and St.
Kittsian children will appreciate the presence and role of vervet monkeys in the Brimstone Hill story.
Also, the landscapes of St. Kitts and Jamaica are described accurately, without an iota of romanticization. Not to mention the fact that the author somehow manages to fit a Caribbean history lesson into practically every other paragraph while maintaining the natural flow of the narrative. Ann-Catherine Loo's realistic pencil illustrations are somewhat static but work well with the text and will appeal to readers transitioning from picture books to chapter books.
Finally, Ottley-Mitchell's skill as a story-teller is not to be discounted. The stories hold the reader's attention, the characters are interesting and believable, and both books present well-developed plots. As a historical fiction writer in particular, Ottley-Mitchell is in her element, seamlessly blending fact and fiction, accurately reflecting the beliefs and values of the times, and revealing an understanding of historical events that rivals the practiced historian. He looked up the sides of the hole; they were very steep and he could not climb out.
Then her voice sounded much closer as if she were directly above the hole. An Adventure in Dark Cave Barbuda perhaps? Related 1 Comment.
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Children's Books - Chattel House Books
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