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Fire Ship

cat #: 903958
ISBN 10: 0-88984-140-3
ISBN 13: 978-0-88984-140-6
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Book Summary

Thirteen-year-old Dan Dobson and his family have just immigrated to Upper Canada from the American States when the War of 1812 flares up. Their neighbours in the town of York - today's Toronto - suspect them of spying for the Americans, but the Dobsons are loyal to Britain and determined to remain in York. Dan's dream is to sail with the British frigate Sir Isaac Brock which he and his father are helping to build. He sees war as an exciting adventure - that is until he gets his first taste of battle on the day the American forces invade York.

Fire Ship is a fast-moving historical novel for young people that brings the War of 1812 to life in a way that only Marianne Brandis can. The attention to detail and acute historical sensibility that so distinguished Brandis's `Emma' trilogy are in full evidence once again. From the opening scene of Fire Ship in which Dan paddles across the silent bay towards Toronto Island to the graphic scenes of cannon fire and rough military doctoring in Fort York, Brandis invites us to experience Toronto exactly as it was in 1813. She also introduces us to a strong new character in Dan who grapples with issues of loyalty and nationality and the brutality of war. `The story must work as a story; it must not be a sugar-coated history lesson,' Brandis says of her approach to historical fiction, `my goal is to give fiction the verisimilitude of fact, and to touch fact with the colour and vivacity of fiction.'

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