Book Review: The True Confesssions of Charlotte Doyle, by Avi

charlotte_doyle_coverThe True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, a journey of a ship-girl crashing through the waves of beautifully written literature by Avi, is a truly magnificent novel. I would rate it a 10 out of 10 for its humor, formality, and engaging style of writing.

The story starts out with a young woman, Charlotte, whose parents had moved to America, but she had stayed in England to finish school. At the end of the year, she was to have a servant pick her up and accompany her to the boat. She had another worker carry her trunk to the ship, but when they heard the name of the ship and its captain, they took off running. Two of them had left her alone! Charlotte was astonished, nevertheless, she boarded the boat. That first night on the ship, she remembered seeing a figure with only one arm scampering up one of the main masts.

The voyage started out, and Charlotte met a man named Zachariah. At first, he didn’t seem like anyone who interested her, but later he became her caring mentor. The captain seemed nice at first but later was revealed to be one of the cruelest people Charlotte had ever known.  A series of odd events occurred, but Charlotte didn’t tell a soul.

When chaos and shouts of anger came from the crew the first time, Charlotte was scared. However, after the first attempt to kill the captain, Charlotte slipped away from the captain’s reach, chopped off her hair, and became one with the crew to complete their army. They tried for a second strike where Zachariah was almost killed, but a stowaway with only one arm was found. Mayhem then ensued, and Charlotte faced her greatest challenge to stand up for herself with the ultimate goal of being reunited with her parents.

Maya S., 6th grade

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