Review of A Difficult Boy by M.P. Barker
An indentured servant is a laborer under contract of the employer for some period of time, usually three to seven years, in exchange for such things as ship's passage, food, land and accommodations.
A Difficult Boy is a story about 2 indentured servant, Ethan(9) and Daniel(17). The 2 come from completely different backgrounds and have completly different personalities but somehow forge a friendship. A friendship-they soon learn-that may save their lives.
Now.......I reallly like historical fiction but I had never read a book about indentured servants. Indentured servants are like just one of those stupid vocab words they make you learn in grade school, right? They aren't important, right? They don't have any sort of story to tell,right?
I imagined life as an indentured servant hard but not this hard. Daniel( or they call him Paddy-which is a disrespectful name to Irish) was wipped and beaten. These indentured servantshad work for every stitch on their back and ever crumb of food.
Ok, so now you think this is a book about how hard life is being an indentured servant.....
Most of all this book is about friendship and the importance of friendship. It is just a beautiful story set to a beautiful background or think about it this way. The environment/setting move the story-but they are not the story. Think Harry Potter or Star Wars. They are vital to the story but not THE story. Daniel and Ethan's relationship grows and evolves as the story goes on.
My favorite aspect of the book is how real it feels. The racism Daniel gets. The hardships Ethan goes through. Their friendship even all feels very real..........and that's why I love this book. I read it within 24 hours and I couldn't put it down. At about Chapter 6 you will be hooked! I reccomend this for all historical readers as well as those looking for a wonderful story about friendship
NOTE: Look for The Difficult Boy layout and interview with Ms. M.B. Barker coming soon!