Thursday, February 16, 2012

Children of the New Forest

The Children of the New ForestThe Children of the New Forest by Frederick Marryat

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I read this with my daughter as part of the Ambleside Online homeschool curriculum for Year 3 and it was surprisingly good. The language was archaic, but the story was engaging: the four orphaned children of Cavalier Colonel Beverly escape from the burning of their estate at Arnwood and come to live in the New Forest under the protection of a wise forester, Joseph Armitage, until they are old enough to fend for themselves. Each child discovers talents and skills that help them to survive and prosper. There were a number of humorous scenes between the characters that my daughter enjoyed, and a little romance between the eldest son and a sweet girl named Patience Heatherstone.

I can see why Ambleside uses this book, as the story delivers a good deal of English history from the Cromwell period, as well as an exciting adventure that children (and adults) can enjoy.

An added bonus: the author led a very interesting life:

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  1. I read this book with my daughter when she was in AO3, and I was also surprised by how much we enjoyed the story and how much history we learned. I need to pull it out again for my younger child....I've rather slipped on our AO books with him.

    1. Yes! I'm often surprised at how well my children like the books that AO chooses. Sometimes, I think to myself, "oh, this will not go over well" but then they are soon begging me to read another chapter!