Rave Reviews Log: Historical Fiction

November 28, 2006

Crispin: At the Edge of the World

By Avi
Period: 14th century/Medieval England
Rating: 4 1/4 stars

In this sequel to the Newbery Award-winning Crispin: The Cross of Lead, we pick up exactly where we left off--with Crispin and his protector Bear fleeing from the ones who had imprisoned and tortured Bear as a spy. But Bear is now regarded as a traitor by the resistance movement he spied for, and soon they begin to pursue him as well. Injured and weakened, Bear collapses and Crispin manages to get him to a forestwife for treatment. There, they end up adopting a new member of their "family," Troth, a girl with a birth defect who has been shunned. Bear, Crispin and Troth travel together, looking for a place where they can rest and be safe from pursuit. Their search takes them to the coast, the ocean, and to a new land, but every stage of the journey brings fresh dangers. Crispin struggles with what it means to grow into manhood, and learns the pain of loving, doing the right thing, and letting go. With plenty of adventure, an ever-moving plot, and good character development, this book stands as a worthy sequel. Readers who enjoyed the first book are sure to like this second adventure, with ample room for another book left wide open.