When sixteen-year-old Kit Tyler arrives on the banks of colonial Connecticut in 1687, she is greeted with suspicion. Because she possesses certain skills that women in that area are unfamiliar with, some people are wary of her. She is alone in the world and traveled by herself out there so that she could live with family that she has never met. This becomes a difficult quest, since Kit and this other side of the family are very different indeed. Love does peek its head into this historical novel ever so subtly, pushing Kit into a role she never thought she would have to play.
On her search for a kindred spirit, Kit discovers Hannah Tupper, who has been labeled “witch” by the townspeople. Her forbidden friendship becomes a life or death situation, and Kit is forced to make a choice. Should she be true to herself, or do what is expected of her?
This young adult historical fiction begins with Kit Tyler arriving in colonial America from the island of Barbados. Her way of life was so very different from what she comes across as she learns of her new family. She humbly asks them to take her in, but is not greeted with a warm reception. While traveling on the boat to Connecticut, she meets Nate Eaton, the captain’s son, and their conflict is confusing for both of them.
When she discovers Hannah Tupper living alone in a cabin, far off from the colonies, she discovers that Nate is Hannah’s secret friend who comes and visits her from time to time. While this is going on, the family that Kit is staying with decides to set her up with a suitor of which Kit has little affection for.
This young adult, historical novel was a fast read. It is simple and interesting, yet does not become complicated while adding the historical backdrop. Speare forms this protagonist with depth and courage and the budding romance in the novel is sweet and intriguing. I am not a historical fiction type of reader, but I loved this book. I would highly recommend it for young people who are looking for something to read for school. I give it 4 out of 5 stars. Go pick it up today!