A Review Of "The Journal Of William Thomas Emerson: A Revolutionary War Patriot"
The life of 10 years-old William Thomas Emerson is forever changed when his family is killed when their home is struck by lightening. William eventually ends up at The Seven Stars Inn in Boston where he finds himself amidst the turbulent days leading up to America's Revolutionary War.
Written in the form of William's journal, this historical fiction provides the reader with a glimpse into young Mr. Emerson's life regarding events both mundane and profound. As a border at the Inn, William comes into contact with a committee of Patriots and assists them in a number of tasks essential to the survival of liberty in America such as aiding in the defection of a British office to the Colonial side and in ferreting out a spy from the ranks of the committee's own membership.
Crafted as a first person account, Denenberg does not gloss over incidents that would shock our contemporary sensibilities as might be the case in a more detached theoretical exposition. Neither does he sugarcoat the shortcomings of either side.
For example, not only does Denenberg depict a Redcoat pummeling an innocent bystander to death, but he also portrays a Patriot mob that vandalizes and burns down the house of a Tory sympathizer.
Of America's Founding Fathers, it has been said they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor. This truth is movingly emphasized in the book's epilogue where it is revealed what ultimately happens to the characters and one learns some of them were called upon to give the last full measure of devotion.
In addressing the purpose behind the book, Denenberg writes, "The American Revolution, more than any other event in American history, has been presented to young readers as an abstract, artificial, distant, and disembodied occurrence involving old men who wore funny clothes and later became statues and oil paintings...I hoped to accomplish two things: to reveal...what it was like to live in 1774 in Boston. And to bring the revolution to life by showing it affected ordinary people and how they affected it."
The Journal of William Thomas Emerson will help the reader better understand what those living at this period in American history had to endure and to more fully appreciate the gift of liberty those forefathers assisted in passing down to each one of us.
Frederick Meekins is an independent theologian and social critic. Frederick holds a BS in Political Science/History, a MA in Apologetics/Christian Philosophy from Trinity Theological Seminary, and a PhD. in Christian Apologetics from Newburgh Theological Seminary.