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March 2019 Juvenile Fiction

Poison in the Colony
James Town 1622
By (author): Elisa Carbone
9780425291832 Hardcover English Juvenile: Age (years) from 8 - 12, Grade (US) from 3 - 7 JUVENILE FICTION / Historical / United States / Colonial & Revolutionary Periods Mar 26, 2019
$23.99 CAD
Active 5.75 x 8.5 x 1.06 in 320 pages Viking Children's Books Viking Books for Young Readers
The fascinating companion title to the award-winning historical novel Blood on the River: James Town 1607.

After the colony of James Town is founded in 1607. After Captain John Smith establishes trade with the Native Americans. After Pocahontas befriends the colonists. After early settlers both thrive and die in this new world…a girl is born. Virginia.

Virginia Laydon, an infant at the end of Blood on the River, has now grown up in a colony that is teetering dangerously on the precipice of conflict with the native Algonquins. Virginia has the gift, or the curse, of the knowing-an ability that could help save the colony, and is equally likely to land her at the burning stake as an accused witch.

Virginia struggles to make sense of her own inner world against the backdrop of pivotal years in the Jamestown colony. The first representative government is established, the first enslaved Africans arrive, and the self-righteousness of the colony’s leaders angers the Algonquin.

When Virginia’s mother first learns of her gift, she is terrified. Kill it, her mother says, or they will kill you. When accusations and danger threaten, Virginia learns that she is on her own; her mother must protect her young sisters rather than stand up for her. So begins a journey of self-realization and increasing strength, as Virginia goes from being a self-protective young girl to someone who knows she must live her own truth even if it will be the end of her.

Blood on the River has sold over a third of a million copies. Virginia is aimed at the same middle grade readers who loved Blood on the River.

Meticulously researched early American history by a respected author.

Blood on the River is on many school’s required reading lists and widely used in curriculums in American history.

Elisa Carbone has received numerous state book awards, including The Jefferson Cup and the Virginia Reader’s Choice Middle School list.

Story is filled with real people and events that occured in 17th century Virginia (in and around James Town).

Diverse characters, including Algonguin Indians, some of the first enslaved Africans, and many James Town residents.

Strong girl character: Virginia is a wonderfully complex character who is very strong, thoughtful, and brave.

Full of action, page-turning scenes, and cliff-hanging chapters. Boys loved Blood on the River, and they’ll love this one, too.

In addition to being a writer and historical researcher, Elisa Carbone is an accomplished rock climber, wind surfer, white water kayaker, and cross-country skiier. She has masters degrees in Communication and Education, and has taught on the college level. She now divides her time between Silver Spring, Maryland, and Hendricks, West Virginia. Visit her at

Author Residence: Silver Spring, MD & Hendricks, WV

Raves for Elisa Carbone’s writing:

* “Good use is made of eyewitness accounts in a telling that far transcends the usual dry textbook summaries of the period. While learning much history, readers will find characters real enough to care about. Lively historical fiction at its best.”—Kirkus, starred review of Blood on the River

“A cheerful mix of gardening, history and patriotism…Along with Hill’s charming pencil and gouache illustrations full of homey retro details, Carbone’s story gently humanizes history, reminding us that children are a part of it, too.”—New York Times Book Review on Diana’s White House Garden

* “Riveting reading.”—Kirkus, starred review of Heroes of the Surf

* “Equal parts entertaining and provocative. An incisive reflection on endurance, independence, belonging, self-knowledge, and love.”—Publishers Weekly, starred review of Jump

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