HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Elijah of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis
Loading...

Elijah of Buxton (original 2007; edition 2009)

by Christopher Paul Curtis

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,0131053,333 (4.17)71
Member:Tiggerwell
Title:Elijah of Buxton
Authors:Christopher Paul Curtis
Info:Scholastic Paperbacks (2009), Paperback, 368 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:None

Work details

Elijah Of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis (2007)

None.

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 71 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 105 (next | show all)
I had mixed feelings about this book while reading it. I liked this book because it had an interesting storyline of a place and topic that was new to me. I had never thought about the slaves that had escaped to Canada for freedom. Even though the story of Elijah turned out to be interesting, it had a rocky beginning. The book had a slow pace and wasn’t engaging for the first 13 chapters. However, the characters were well-developed and can easily draw the emotion of the audience. It was a wonderful community of people who welcomed newcomers with a celebration, but it was streaked with the menacing character of a crooked preacher. Elijah, with his fear of snakes, was perceived as “fragile” by his mother. But throughout the story, he proved to be courageous as he took steps to attempt right a huge mistake. I wouldn’t suggest this book for young readers. Even though this was an award winning book, I would probably only give it 4 stars. ( )
  KrissyKares | Apr 21, 2017 |
Telling the life and experience of the first freeborn child of Buxton Canada. This historical fiction is great for talking about the underground railroad, freedom and slavery. This book will make you want to go to Buxton Canada to see the landscape in which it was based off of. ( )
  AnnaBailey | Mar 9, 2017 |
Elijah lives in the town of Buxton, a community for negroes in Canada. It's one end of the underground railroad. The story takes us into the community and shows us life for the free.
  edwardcandler | Mar 6, 2017 |
I had very mixed feelings about this book. Going into this read, I was expecting this book to be filled with suspense. However, the book did not pick up until chapter 15--more than halfway through the book, where Mrs. Holton gives Mr. Leroy her gold to buy his family. This made Elijah a very difficult book for me to get into, especially since much of the first half of the novel seems to be irrelevant to the plot. On the other hand, though, once the book picked up it was really hard to put down. The last few chapters of the book were so interesting, and really showed great character development for Elijah. Where he was once a "fragile" boy, he had become a brave young man. What I also really enjoyed about the book was the dialect Christopher Paul Curtis used in his writing. It showed the careful steps he took in creating an authentic historical story. For instance, rather than saying "eat," Curtis would say, "et." Lastly, I really enjoyed the recurring themes of freedom and fragility throughout the novel. Freedom was brought up throughout the book by the elders in Buxton, many of which were slaves at one point or another. It came full circle, though, when Elijah saw the slaves in the barn and ended up taking Hope home with him. The theme of fragility was seen through Elijah's character development, and is something I think many children can relate to. Personally, I probably wouldn't read this book again, but can definitely see the merit for young readers. ( )
  kuhl2 | Feb 27, 2017 |
I gave this book 3 stars because it was very hard to get into. i had to force myself to keep reading. This book is the story of a boy named Elijah who is the first free-person born in his town. Elijah had a knack for throwing rocks and his family friend, Preacher, thought it was an amazing talent. Elijah was considered "fra-gile" but Preacher saw talent in him. I would use this book in my classroom to showcase what life in Elijah's tim period. Elijah struggled with being the first free-person born in their town. He didn't relate to the other people that were once enslaved, which made him sort of an outsider. ( )
  pwalke10 | Feb 27, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 105 (next | show all)
Elijah Freeman, 11, has two claims to fame. He was the first child "born free" to former slaves in Buxton, a (real) haven established in 1849 in Canada by an American abolitionist. The rest of his celebrity, Elijah reports in his folksy vernacular, stems from a "tragical" event. When Frederick Douglass, the "famousest, smartest man who ever escaped from slavery," visited Buxton, he held baby Elijah aloft, declaring him a "shining bacon of light and hope," tossing him up and down until the jostled baby threw up-on Douglass. The arresting historical setting and physical comedy signal classic Curtis (Bud, Not Buddy), but while Elijah's boyish voice represents the Newbery Medalist at his finest, the story unspools at so leisurely a pace that kids might easily lose interest. Readers meet Buxton's citizens, people who have known great cruelty and yet are uncommonly polite and welcoming to strangers. Humor abounds: Elijah's best friend puzzles over the phrase "familiarity breeds contempt" and decides it's about sexual reproduction. There's a rapscallion of a villain in the Right Reverend Deacon Doctor Zephariah Connerly the Third, a smart-talking preacher no one trusts, and, after 200 pages, a riveting plot: Zephariah makes off with a fortune meant to buy a family of slaves their freedom. Curtis brings the story full-circle, demonstrating how Elijah the "fra-gile" child has become sturdy, capable of stealing across the border in pursuit of the crooked preacher, and strong enough to withstand a confrontation with the horrors of slavery. The powerful ending is violent and unsettling, yet also manages to be uplifting. Ages 9-12. (Oct.)
Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
added by sriches | editPublishers Weekly, Reed Business Information (Jul 22, 2009)
 
Krista Johansen (Resource Links, December 2007 (Vol. 13, No. 2))
It may surprise some to discover that Christopher Paul Curtis, who has both a Newbery Honor and a Newbery Medal to his credit, has actually lived in Canada for a quarter of a century. In Elijah of Buxton he sets a story in Canada West (soon to become Ontario) just before the time of the American Civil War. Elijah Freeman is the child of former slaves, the first baby born in the settlement of Buxton. He is a quick-witted, resourceful, and imaginative boy with strong reactions to what he sees going on around him and a wry, self-depreciating way of presenting himself. The book is a first-person narrative, and Elijah seems to be telling the story not long after it happened. He is no adult looking back on his past but still a young boy getting events clear in his mind. Curtis can be a very funny writer and some of the more subtle comedy in the story (and some of the more sombre moments too) arise from Elijah's failure to fully understand adults. Some of these may be lost on younger children, no more experienced than Elijah, on a first reading, but they benefit older readers. Through various episodes in Elijah's daily round of school, chores, fishing, and family life, the first part of the story introduces Elijah's character and his relationships with people like Mr. Leroy, who is saving money to buy his family's freedom, and the untrustworthy, self-proclaimed Preacher. It also depicts everyday life in Buxton and conveys the history and principles of this idealistic, successful settlement of people who had escaped slavery. Elijah's pranks and adventures and the stories of loss and courage his elders tell all weave a background full of interest for the story to come. The second part of the book is about Elijah's journey across the border into Michigan, accompanying Mr. Leroy, without his parents' knowledge. They are tracking down the Preacher, who has fled with money entrusted to him to free Mr. Leroy's family. Mr. Leroy suffers a heart attack and dies. Elijah continues his hunt alone, but finds instead four men, a woman, and a baby who had escaped slavery only to be recaptured almost within sight of the border. They are chained up naked in a barn. The Preacher's body is there as well; he has been killed and Mr. Leroy's money is long gone. Elijah is horrified by the reality of slavery seen firsthand - at first he did not even realize the people were human, but thought them ghosts or demons. He tries to get some free Africans in the neighbourhood to help him rescue them, but they refuse, fearing for their own safety. He returns to take a baby back to Buxton with him, saving at least that one life. The story is one of tragedy: the baby's parents and the other captives are likely to die, because although they cannot escape their chains, Mrs. Chloe has the Preacher's revolver, given to her by Elijah; Mr. Leroy's family is still enslaved, not even knowing their husband and father has died trying to save them. It is also one of hope and small, enduring victories, as Elijah brings the baby, Hope Too-mah-ee-nee, safely to Buxton. Elijah of Buxton is an excellent story, funny, suspenseful, and horrifying. The historical background is brought to life with great attention to detail and accuracy, while Elijah's role as a narrator examining himself and his world allows the unfamiliar to be explained in a natural and unobtrusive way. Elijah is a very realistic eleven-year-old who goes from being an ordinary boy dealing with everyday problems to a person facing a situation in which even an adult would have found himself helpless to do more. Though he calls himself fragile for his overwhelming emotional reactions to events, Elijah's courage, resilience and determination make him a hero. Elijah of Buxton will quite deservedly find a place in every elementary and middle-school library. In the classroom, it could be used in units studying this period in Canada's history, in examining the history of slavery and the Underground Railroad in North American, and as a portrayal of mid-nineteenth-century life in general.
added by kthomp25 | editResource Links,, Krista Johansen
 
Eleven-year-old Elijah Freeman is known for two things: being the first child born free in Buxton, Canada, and throwing up on the great Frederick Douglass. It's 1859, in Buxton, a settlement for slaves making it to freedom in Canada, a setting so thoroughly evoked, with characters so real, that readers will live the story, not just read it. This is not a zip-ahead-and-see-what-happens-next novel. It's for settling into and savoring the rich, masterful storytelling, for getting to know Elijah, Cooter and the Preacher, for laughing at stories of hoop snakes, toady-frogs and fish-head chunking and crying when Leroy finally gets money to buy back his wife and children, but has the money stolen. Then Elijah journeys to America and risks his life to do what's right. This is Curtis's best novel yet, and no doubt many readers, young and old, will finish and say, "This is one of the best books I have ever read." (author's note) (Fiction. 9+)
added by sriches | editKirkus Reviews
 
Floating up like a bubble through layers of history, buoyed with hope and comic energy…Elijah of Buxton tells the story of Elijah Freeman, the first freeborn child in the historic Elgin Settlement, a village of escaped slaves in Canada…As in his previous novels, Curtis is a master at balancing the serious and the lighthearted: as Langston Hughes said of the blues, "not softened with tears, but hardened with laughter." He has already received a Newbery medal and an honor for two novels rooted in the experience of black Americans: "The Watsons Go to Birmingham--1963 and Bud, Not Buddy. His latest book is another natural award candidate and makes an excellent case, in a story positively brimming with both truth and sense, for the ability of historical fiction to bring history to life.
added by sriches | editNew York Times
 
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
To the original twenty-one former-slave settlers of the Elgin Settlement and Buxton Mission of Raleigh: Eliza, Amelia, Mollie, Sarah, Isaiah Phares, Harriet, Solomon, Jacob King, Talbert King, Peter King, Fanny, Ben Phares, Robin Phares, Stephen Phares, Emeline Phares, and Isaac and Catherine Riley and their four children. And to the Reverend William King and his love of justice.
First words
It was Sunday after church and all my chores were done.
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Story of a boy who was born out of slavery and has to go to an area that has slavery.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0439023459, Paperback)

Master storyteller Christopher Paul Curtis's Newbery Honor novel, featuring his trademark humor, unique narrative voice, and new cover art--now in paperback!

Eleven-year-old Elijah lives in Buxton, Canada, a settlement of runaway slaves near the American border. He's the first child in town to be born free, and he ought to be famous just for that. Unfortunately, all that most people see is a "fra-gile" boy who's scared of snakes and talks too much. But everything changes when a former slave steals money from Elijah's friend, who has been saving to buy his family out of captivity in the South. Now it's up to Elijah to track down the thief--and his dangerous journey just might make a hero out of him, if only he can find the courage to get back home.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:36 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

In 1859, eleven-year-old Elijah Freeman, the first free-born child in Buxton, Canada, which is a haven for slaves fleeing the American south, uses his wits and skills to try to bring to justice the lying preacher who has stolen money that was to be used to buy a family's freedom.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
11 avail.
21 wanted
1 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (4.17)
0.5
1
1.5 1
2 6
2.5 7
3 40
3.5 15
4 97
4.5 27
5 109

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

You are using the new servers! | About | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 115,103,246 books! | Top bar: Always visible