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Children's Literature Reviews
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Boston Jane : the claim
Jennifer L. Holm.
Publisher description
New York, NY : HarperCollins Publishers, c2004.
230 p. ; 22 cm.

Annotations:

Sequel to: Boston Jane: wilderness days.
The arrival from Philadelphia of her spiteful nemesis Sally Biddle and the return of her corrupt ex-fiance Richard Baldt spell trouble for seventeen-year-old Miss Jane Peck, who has survived on her own in Shoalwater Bay, a community of white settlers and Chinook Indians in 1850s Washington Territory.

Reading Measurement Programs:


Accelerated Reader
Interest Level Middle Grade
Book Level 5.1
Accelerated Reader Points 7

Reviews:

Kay Weisman (Booklist, Mar. 1, 2004 (Vol. 100, No. 13))
Holm continues Jane's adventure-romance, which began in Boston Jane: An Adventure (2001) and continued in Boston Jane: Wilderness Days (2002). In this story Jane's nemesis from her Philadelphia days, Sally Biddle, has arrived in Shoalwater Bay. Sally is up to her usual schemes, trying to isolate Jane from her new female friends and causing trouble between Jane and Jehu, the man Jane loves. Complicating matters, Jane's former fiance William has also returned--to help the governor relocate the Chinook population and to have Jane's homestead claim declared invalid. As always, Holm's characters are skillfully drawn. Readers will identify with the painful results of Sally's dirty tricks and cheer Jane on as she finds the backbone to put Sally in her place. A subplot involving a young girl taken away from her Chinook mother after the death of her white father is also well handled. The author's attention to historical accuracy (some of it involving her own family) is strong, as always, but memorable characters and all-too-believable situations are the real hallmarks of this very satisfying read. Category: Books for Middle Readers--Fiction. 2004, HarperCollins, $15.99, $16.89. Gr. 5-8.

Carol Raker Collins, Ph.D. (Children's Literature)
This is the third in a 19th century historical novel series about a young pioneer nicknamed "Boston Jane." Here 17-year-old Jane Peck must face two old nemeses that threaten her claim to happiness on the Northwestern Pacific Coast. Like a memelose (local Chinook Indian word for ghost) from Jane's East Coast past, Philadelphia Sally Biddle comes to live in the oyster town where Jane has finally settled in. Jane fought hard to support herself through an oyster business and as a concierge in the town's hotel. She also developed a circle of friends, including a loving boyfriend, Jehu Scudder. She is even about to claim a log cabin on property of her very own! But two-faced Sally spitefully undermines Jane's status. William Baldt, Jane's' former fiancé who jilted her to marry someone else, returns to the oyster town to take over by putting Chinook "savages" and women like Jane in their places. Jane's intelligence and Jehu's cleverness are a winning response to these threats. All is told in compelling historical detail in an 1850s Washington Territory setting. Acknowledgments, author's note, and a resource list indicate the research that went into the writing. The novel makes the reader want to read the other books in this series. The book is appropriate for a strong middle reader, while young adults especially should find the adventures of this independent young woman entertaining and educational. 2004, HarperCollinsPublishers, $15.99 and $23.99. Ages 10 up.

Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, January 15, 2004 (Vol. 72, No. 2))
In the third installment of her trilogy about Boston Jane, Holm continues the drama of white settlers in the Washington Territory, some of whom embrace the Chinook way of life and many of whom disdain their so-called "savage" ways. This familiar conflict rears its ugly head when a child of a Chinook Indian mother and a white father who has died, is taken away from the mother to be raised by a white family. Additional aspects of settlement life include the coming of a dry-goods store, first elections, and fraudulent land schemes. Jane, who had uprooted herself from Philadelphia and found friendship and promise in this rough new community, now faces a new threat, not the physical danger of murderers and the frontier, but the supercilious and disdainful ways of Sally Biddle, her old Philadelphia nemesis. She is less successful in overcoming the proper Ms. Biddle and, in fact, needs the familiar plot device of a letter left lying about to achieve victory. That victory is a proposal of marriage from the handsome Jehu. While this is not as compelling as the previous two titles, Jane's fans will delight in the turn of events and celebrate with her. 2004, HarperCollins, 240p, $15.99. Category: Fiction. Ages 10 to 14. © 2004 Kirkus Reviews/VNU eMedia, Inc. All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly (Publishers Weekly)
Boston Jane: The Claim by Jennifer L. Holm, continues Jane's ongoing frontier adventures in the Pacific Northwest. Her world turns tumultuous when Sally Biddle, her debutante nemesis, arrives at Shoalwater Bay intent on destroying Jane's life. Moreover, Jane must contend with her ex-fiance's attempts to turn the settlers against the native Chinooks.

Amber Coronado (The Lorgnette - Heart of Texas Reviews (Vol. 17, No. 3))
In this third installation of the Boston Jane series, readers again enter the life of the strong, ever growing and maturing Jane Peck. This time seventeen-year-old Jane has finally claimed a plot of land for her own and the man she loves, the rugged sailor Jehu, is building a home for her. Life is good and on course until Jane’s childhood nemesis, Sally Biddle, arrives in Shoalwater Bay. Sally warms the hearts of everyone in the town, but is only doing so to play nasty tricks on Jane. To make matters worse, William Baldt, the man who lured her to the wilderness and then dumper her there, arrives to disrupt her life again with his plan to take relocate the Chinooks and take over Jane’s claim. Together, her two worst enemies deceive her, lie about her, turn her friends against her, and come very close to taking her land. Readers will identify with Jane and the pain she feels at the result of the tricks played on her by Sally and William. They will also feel Jane’s frustration with Jehu and his lack of admission to loving her. As in the first two novels, the author’s extensive knowledge of history add to the richness and completeness of this very satisfying read. Fiction, Highly Recommended. Grades 5 and up. 2004, HarperCollins, 230p., $16.89. Ages 10 up.

Jenny Ingram (VOYA, April 2004 (Vol. 27, No. 1))
Jane Peck, Holm's independent heroine, returns in this third installment of the Boston Jane series. As one of Shoalwater Bay's established settlers, she watches the town's growth and notices the issues that accompany it: prejudice, crime, and tensions resulting from overcrowding. The simple bay life that Jane knows is rapidly disappearing, and elements of the young ladies' academy from the first book surface. Central to the story is the arrival of Jane's nemesis from Philadelphia, Sally Biddle, whose primary goal is to agitate Jane and destroy her relationship with Jehu. The introduction of "civilized" society to Shoalwater Bay changes the settlers' relationship with their Chinook neighbors and also challenges the freedom that women have enjoyed in the remote setting. The story is fast paced and lively, and Holm successfully campaigns for diversity and feminism without making her plot seem like a thinly disguised message. The weak points in this book are the pulp-romance style of Jane's unsure relationship with Jehu, and the simplistic revenge fantasy played out with Sally. Jane is a complex protagonist, and her fans deserve more substance than the book's brooding leading man and trite troublemaker provide. Still Holm sets the story up for another sequel, and readers will be glad to know that she has more plans for her likeable heroine. VOYA CODES: 3Q 5P M J (Readable without serious defects; Every YA (who reads) was dying to read it yesterday; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2004, HarperCollins, 240p., $15.99 and PLB $16.95. Ages 11 to 15.

Kristen Moreland, Teen Reviewer (VOYA, April 2004 (Vol. 27, No. 1))
Holm does a good job of capturing Jane's feelings about every event. The Chinook customs and traditions she includes make the book more interesting, and Holm includes a wide range of characters to make the book more entertaining. This series has been enjoyable so far, and this installment sets itself up for a fourth book. Jane's constant struggles will keep the reader interested. This book would appeal to most teens. VOYA CODES: 4Q 4P M J (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2004, HarperCollins, 240p., $15.99 and PLB $16.95. Ages 11 to 15.

Subjects:

Frontier and pioneer life--Washington (State) Fiction.
Orphans Fiction.
Chinook Indians Fiction.
Indians of North America--Washington (State) Fiction.
Washington Territory--History Fiction.
LanguageCall NumberLCCNDewey DecimalISBN/ISSN
English (eng) PZ7.H732226 Br 2004
2003009556 [Fic]
0060290455
0060290463 (lib. bdg.)
9780060290450
9780060290467
9780060290450
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