the true confessions of charlotte doyle | review

I’m not sure how many times I have listened to this audiobook in the past ten years but it is one of my favorite stories from eighth grade.  I just listened to it again this week and it’s about time I reviewed it!!


I first encountered this book when I was in eighth grade.  I liked it so much, I did one of my book report projects on it.  For some reason, tales about the high seas intrigued me and I went through this lady pirate phase.  Don’t ask.  This book doesn’t even contain pirates.  I just wanted to read about girls on ships and those books were out there – but the girls in the books I got my hands on were pirates!

I have since gotten over the whole pirate thing but I’ve still kept this piece of junior fiction on my list of favorite stories.

The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle by Avi

Rating: 5.0 – 5.0

My Thoughts:

Charlotte Doyle is a sweet thirteen-year-old girl traveling from Liverpool, England to her family in America.  It’s quite a simple arrangement really.  Two other families are supposed to travel on the same voyage, thus keeping her protected and occupied.  However, when she boards the ship, the other passengers are nowhere to be seen and she realizes she must make the trip as the only passenger besides captain and crew.

Something’s not right.

Word has it that the captain is not what he seems.  But Charlotte finds him the very sole of propriety, class, and dignity – everything she has been brought up to expect and respect in a gentleman.  He’s the one man who understands her, can protect her, and provide her with the kind of respectable companionship on this long, lonely voyage.  But some of the crew have made it clear that they do not trust or like him.

So what is she supposed to do when everything is turned upside down and she’s caught in the middle of the power struggle?

And what is supposed to do when she’s accused of murder, tried and found guilty?

I have a thing for mysteries, I must say.  And for ship stories.  Ten years later and it still does the job.

This book counts towards the following challenges:




peeled | book review

I’m sneaking in this review. I should be doing a myriad of other things but I have a looooong list of reviews dating back to reads from last summer (oi vey!) so I need to get on it!

I read this book a few years ago and last year enjoyed the audiobook.  Joan Bauer became one of my favorite JF novelists when I was a teenager and I still enjoy revisiting her teen stories every once in awhile.  This one is no exception.


Peeled by Joan Bauer

Rating: 4.0 – 4.0

Hildy Biddle is a reporter for The Core, her high school paper, and has big dreams of being a journalist like her father. When the happy apple town of Banesville, New York is hit with the biggest story of the year, she and her friends are swept into the drama of lies, sensationalism and…ghost sightings?? Yeah, someone or something seems to be haunting Banesville and The Core is determined to find out who.  But when the heat gets turned up and the town becomes more fearful, Hildy questions whether she’s cut out to handle the truth.  She is, after all, just a kid and the bad guys have more power.  How is she supposed to fight through all the lies? How can one group of kids prove that it’s all just a big hoax when the story keeps getting deeper and deeper, feeding the public’s fear? How can they fight when the fear is hitting them too? One thing’s for sure, if they lose, their town will never be the same again.

I love Joan Bauer’s stories because they deal with great issues and her characters work through the challenges and overcome their fears and hang ups. This book deals with greed and yellow journalism.  Hildy is a determined girl who will not settle for anything less than the truth. She works toward excellence in her writing and takes advice and criticism from those who are older and wiser.  These kinds of qualities made her endearing to me when I first read the book and caused me to come back for another visit.

This book is geared for junior high aged kids.  I was a little old for it by the time I read it but I enjoyed it anyway. Probably called out to the writer in me ;).  It’s a fun book with great characters and dialogue – just as I’ve come to expect from Joan Bauer.  She never disappoints!

Woot!  I can cross off this review from my list :D

Happy reading, y’all!