The Bronze Bow

Book cover: 'The Bronze Bow'
Elizabeth George Speare
Houghton Mifflin
Number of pages: 
256 pages
Grade / Age level: 

The Bronze Bow, by Elizabeth George Speare, brings to life the era when Jesus walked on the earth. The book is written through the eyes of Daniel bar Jamin, a poor village boy, who is desperately seeking to revenge the crucifixion of his father at the hands of Roman soldiers. Daniel lives in the hills above Ketzah with a band of thieves, who ruthlessly attack Romans at every opportunity. The stark hatred that drives Daniel contrasts sharply with the love that he receives from his friend, Joel, and his own gentle sister. The movement of Jesus and his apostles form a shadowy sub-plot. The novel moves from the overwhelming hatred of Daniel towards the Romans, to the kindness of the Christians that he encounters. The Bronze Bow was written in 1961 and won a well-deserved Newberry Medal for excellence in literature in 1962. It is a superb example of compelling historical fiction and a terrific family read-aloud. Highly recommended.

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