Posted by Lorren on October 20, 2009
I was recently sent a copy of Sarah’s Wish by Jim Baumgardner. I have been reading it with my daughter, a chapter a night, on nights that we can find the time. We’ve been so busy, that we’re on chapter 12 or 14 (although I have to admit, I’ve peeked a little ahead). Although we’re not finished with the book yet, we have been really enjoying it.
Sarah’s Wish is a book that is set in 1858. I have read the American Girl Felicity books to my daughter, as well as the Little House on the Prairie books; although these books happen a few decades before or after Sarah’s Wish, the lives they lead are similar, so my daughter isn’t a stranger to the setting. Sarah is an orphan girl looking for a set of parents. She also has a secret: she has helped free slaves along the underground railroad.
I love this book for several reasons. First, it is an interesting storyline. You care about the characters. They are colorful, and the dialogue is interesting. Secondly, I love how it deals with historical topics of the time. Although I do teach history in school, and we are covering the time period prior to the Civil War in our American History portion of class (I spend the other half of our history time covering Medieval History), my daughter is more likely to be more interested in steamships and the underground railroad if she hears about it in a book. This book brings the time period, and some of the issues of the day, to life. I also like this book because it is a book of Christian values: the people go to church, and although the book isn’t preachy, the characters live Christian lives.
My daughter would like the next book in the series, Sarah’s Promise, for Christmas.
While Amazon.com doesn’t list the reading level for Sarah’s Wish, it does list the reading level for Sarah’s Promise, the next book in the series, at ages 9-12. The book is too difficult for my daughter to read on her own, but it is just about right for me to read to her.
So, will Sarah get her wish for a new family? I read ahead to find out, but I’m not going to tell you. You’ll have to read it for yourself if you want to know.