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Reviewed by Paul Johnson for Readers' Favorite
Bloodied footprints in the snow ... in Revolution Rising: Book Two of the Tewkesbury Chronicles by Jo Gillespie. In the winter of 1778, the fledgling Continental Army is encamped at a place called Valley Forge. Times are extremely hard, with a lack of food and even no shoes to wear. George Washington’s forces face hardship after hardship. Captain Oliver Tewkesbury is currently working as a spy for Washington in the British held stronghold of Philadelphia. His life is ultimately saved by his old friend Gabriel White, and they travel back to Valley Forge with a freed slave named Hut. At the same time, Gabriel’s daughter Rebecca decides she must journey to Valley Forge to help her father and Oliver any way she can, not knowing that her younger sister Mehti has stowed away to come along. Soon all are reunited but face much privation, sickness and sorrow. Another spy mission gains valuable information and, as summer arises, Washington moves his forces out to meet the British. Can the renewed spirit of his young army prevail against the most professional soldiers in the world?
I love period fiction. Many times, however, the subsequent books in a series don’t always live up to the original. This was definitely not the case. I think this one was even better than the first. Revolution Rising is a daring story of courage in the face of dreadful odds, but shows the tenacity and bravery of those who gave up so much to create a new nation. The main characters, Oliver, Gabriel, Rebecca, Mehti and Hut, are very well developed. The plot is extremely well done with a major twist toward the end. I found it to be a very enjoyable read.