Mozay of Pepperwick by Jean Perry

 Mozay, a young fifteen year-old slave receives a mystical message from Old George the Storyteller who has been severely punished for transgressions, and decides to do all he can to escape. Clever and hard-headed, he helps his master Clarence with his lessons, learning to read and write and observe, but his first attempt to escape comes to nothing.

Luckily, a businesswoman, Sarah Manet, sees his potential and helps him get to Charleston, where he still has a difficult time. However, he has exciting adventurres and makes more plans. Will he succeed? It's hard to put this book down as Mozay tries to overcome countless obstacles, and work out mysterious characters, such as the philosophical Nathaniel.

This book not only deals with slavery; it also covers inter-racial relationships, the issues between the North and the South, and it has interesting historical details. I especially liked the notes at the back for those who want to read more about this history. It is like a modern Uncle Tom's Cabin without the cloying sentimentality. Some of it is distressing, but it is an excellent Middle Grade book.

I received this free book from Smith Publicity in return for an honest review.


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