Since I love historical fiction so much, a couple of months ago I decided to start a monthly feature on my blog where I would post about books covering a certain time period or topic in the middle grade & young adult historical fiction genres. In March I posted about Tudor England historical fiction, and in April I blogged about historical fiction about people of color, along with a guest post from Ari of Reading in Color.
This month, I will be posting about another time period I love, Colonial America. This era began in the late 1500s with the early settlements in North America, and continued until the beginning of the American Revolution in 1775 (which I will probably be posting about next month!). There are many interesting historical stories from this era, particularly in the years leading up to the war. Most of the books I am including on this list are ones I read and enjoyed, but a few are from my reading pile. In addition to books set in the United States, I am also including a few books set in Canada during this time period, since it's basically the same historical era. This time around, I am splitting the young adult and middle grade books into two separate posts, so that this post isn't so long!
Young adult books:
Wicked Girls by Stephanie Hemphill: A novel in verse told from the alternating perspectives of three young women involved in the Salem Witch Trials. (to be published in July 2010)
Time of the Witches by Anna Myers: Orphaned Drucilla finds a home with the beautiful but troubled Mistress Putnam as accusations of witchcraft start to swirl in Salem Village.
Beyond the Burning Time by Kathryn Lasky: When, in the winter of 1691, accusations of witchcraft surface in her small New England village, twelve-year-old Mary Chase fights to save her mother from execution.
Witch Child by Celia Rees: In 1659, fourteen-year-old Mary Newbury keeps a journal of her voyage from England to the New World and her experiences living as a witch in a community of Puritans near Salem, Massachusetts.
I Am Regina by Sally M. Keehn: In 1755, as the French and Indian War begins, ten-year-old Regina is kidnapped by Indians in western Pennsylvania, and she must struggle to hold onto memories of her earlier life as she grows up under the name of Tskinnak and starts to become Indian herself.
Paradise by Joan Elizabeth Goodman: In 1542, eager to escape the French Huguenot household of her harsh father, sixteen-year-old Marguerite de la Rocque sails with her equally stern uncle, the Sieur de Roberval, to the New World, where she is left alone on an island with only her young Catholic lover and her chaperone to help her survive.
Trouble's Daughter by Katherine Kirkpatrick: When her family is massacred by Lenape Indians in 1643, nine-year-old Susanna, daughter of Anne Hutchinson, is captured and raised as a Lenape.
The Ransom of Marcy Carter by Caroline Cooney: In 1704, in the English settlement of Deerfield, Massachusetts, eleven-year-old Mercy and her family and neighbors are captured by Mohawk Indians and their French allies, and forced to march through bitter cold to French Canada, where some adapt to new lives and some still hope to be ransomed.
Hang a Thousand Trees With Ribbons by Ann Rinaldi: A fictionalized biography of Phyllis Wheatley who, as a child, was brought to New England to be a slave, and after publishing her first poem when a teenager, gained renown throughout the colonies as an important black American poet.
The Fifth of March by Ann Rinaldi: Fourteen-year-old Rachel Marsh, an indentured servant in the Boston household of John and Abigail Adams, is caught up in the colonists’ unrest that eventually escalates into the massacre of March 5, 1770.
A Break With Charity by Ann Rinaldi: While waiting for a church meeting in 1706, Susanna English, daughter of a wealthy Salem merchant, recalls the malice, fear, and accusations of witchcraft that tore her village apart in 1692.
The Color of Fire by Ann Rinaldi: It is 1741 and, as a colony of Britain, America is at war with Spain. Phoebe watches as her town erupts into mass hysteria when the whites in New York City accuse the black slaves of planning an uprising. With people implicating each other at every turn, Phoebe has to decide if she’s willing to save her friend Cuffee from execution, or if her own conscience and quest for freedom will be singed by her indiscretions.
The Secret of Sarah Revere by Ann Rinaldi: Paul Revere’s daughter describes her father’s "rides" and the intelligence network of the patriot community prior to the American Revolution.
Redemption by Julie Chibbaro: Chronicles the arduous journey of a twelve-year-old English girl and her mother as they flee with other religious protesters to the New World in the early 1500’s, and the heartbreak and hope they find when they arrive.
Sister to the Wolf by Maxine Trottier: In 1703 Quebec, Cecile defies convention by purchasing and freeing Lesharo, a Pawnee Indian slave she witnesses being branded, and he, deeply indebted, accompanies her and her father, a coureur de bois, to Fort Detroit.
Katherine: Heart of Freedom by Cameron Dokey: Sixteen-year-old Katherine rescues a handsome young stranger who is fleeing from the loyalists, and soon finds out her own father is secretly involved in American Patriot activities. Disguising herself as a boy, she sets out to help the cause of freedom and finds adventure and love along the way.
The Lyon Saga series by M.L. Stainer: A teenage girl’s experiences as one of the settlers of the “Lost Colony” of Roanoke.
Sarah on Her Own by Karen M. Coombs: Surviving a tortuous sea journey to the New World, fourteen-year-old Sarah finds herself orphaned and facing marriage or servitude if she is to survive and vows to save enough money to return to England.
A World Away by Pauline Francis: A story of the lost colony of Roanoke told from the points of view of two teenagers, a Native girl and an English boy.
A Stolen Life by Jane Louise Curry: In 1758 in Scotland, teenaged Jamesina MacKenzie finds her courage and resolution severely tested when she is abducted by "spiriters" and, after a harrowing voyage across the Atlantic, sold as a bond slave to a Virginia planter.
Bridie of the Wild Rose Inn by Jennifer Armstrong: Arriving in the Massachusetts Bay Colony from Scotland, Bridie is thrilled to be reunited with her parents, but the spirited lass refuses to conform to the strict rules of the colony.
Books from the Sunfire series (young adult historical romance series, loved this series but they are all out of print now): Elizabeth (Salem Witch Trials, 1692), Marilee (1620s Jamestown Colony), Cassie (1750s, girl captured and raised by Indians), Merrie (voyage on the Mayflower and the settling of Plymouth Colony), and Heather (1660s New York Colony)
My Lady, Pocahontas by Kathleen Kudlinski: Nuttagwon, daughter of a minor Pamunkey chief, is still a girl when Pocahontas’s vision of peace between their people and the newly-arrived English colonists bonds the two in a lifelong friendship as they work together to make the vision a reality.
Cate of the Lost Colony by Lisa M. Klein: When her dalliance with Sir Walter Ralegh is discovered by Queen Elizabeth in 1587, lady-in-waiting Catherine Archer is banished to the struggling colony of Roanoke, where she and the other English settlers must rely on a Croatoan Indian for their survival. (to be published in October 2010)
James Printer: A Novel of Rebellion by Paul Samuel Jacobs: Although he has lived and worked as a printer’s apprentice with the Green family in Cambridge Massachusetts, for many years, James, a Nipmuck Indian, finds himself caught up in the events that lead to a horrible war.
The Serpent Never Sleeps by Scott O'Dell: In the early seventeenth century, Serena Lynn, determined to be with the man she has loved since childhood, travels to the New World and comes to know the hardships of colonial life and the extraordinary Princess Pocahontas.
1609: Winter of the Dead by Elizabeth Massie: Nathaniel and Richard are delighted when Captain John Smith hires them as laborers aboard a ship bound for the New World. They will discover gold! Instead, they find that Virginia is a land of both beauty and terrible hardship. If starvation does not kill them, bitter cold night might.