Read Barefoot: Escape on the Underground Railroad by Pamela Duncan Edwards Free Online
Book Title: Barefoot: Escape on the Underground Railroad|
The author of the book: Pamela Duncan Edwards
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 365 KB
Edition: Turtleback Books
Date of issue: December 15th 1998
ISBN 13: 9780613113076
Read full description of the books Barefoot: Escape on the Underground Railroad:I loved the animal and human interconnectedness in this book. From the animals’ perspective Barefoot (an escaping slave) is hunted by Heavy Boots (those trying to recapture him) and the young man who is fleeing makes use of the presence of the animals to find food, water, etc. It’s an interesting way to tell a story about an escaping slave and the people attempting to recapture him and the people who are willing to help him.
I appreciated the idea of the story and I was very grateful that the author’s note mentioned some of what bothered me: mentioning that the animals didn’t know they were being helpful, and yet asking kids to ask whether perhaps they did know; that latter question was okay with me.
But I didn’t like that in the story, the animals did seem to know a tad more what was going on that is reasonable to expect. I also didn’t like the sort of magical content, the main instance being that while Barefoot is hiding in the marsh he inexplicably escapes getting any mosquito bites, while those same pests cover the Heavy Boots with bites, driving them away from the man escaping. I think it would have been a more powerful story if the escaping slave had been bitten as well. (I know there are great variations in how susceptible different individuals are to getting mosquito bites and perhaps the mosquitoes were attracted by the hunters’ lanterns, but even so; I couldn’t suspend disbelief.)
I did like how it was made obvious that there were multiple slaves fleeing to freedom. And I think that the brief author’s note at the end gave useful information about the Underground Railroad network.
The illustrations were wonderfully atmospheric, and I like how that until toward the end, it was feet that were emphasized in the pictures of the humans. It’s supposed to be night, and the pictures are so dark, even the one that shows the house with the quilt, and I think that was a good choice.
This book could be a good choice for learning about and starting discussions about slavery and the Underground Railroad.
Read information about the authorPamela Duncan Edwards grew up in northern England and moved to the United States several years ago with her husband and two sons. She has lived in the Washington, D.C. area ever since. Her father wrote children’s stories for magazines in England and his love of children’s literature was a huge influence on her. Pamela taught preschool for eleven years in England before becoming a children’s librarian when she moved to the United States. Because of her teaching background, Pamela’s books present early learning concepts and use many literary devices, but also entertain as they teach.
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