Elijah of Buxton

Paperback | February 1, 2009

byChristopher Paul Curtis

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Master storyteller Christopher Paul Curtis lends his trademark humour and vibrant narrative style to the gripping tale of eleven-year-old Elijah Freeman. The first child born into freedom in Buxton, Ontario, a settlement of runaway slaves just over the border from Detroit, Elijah is best known in his hometown as the boy who threw up on Frederick Douglass. Not on purpose, of course, he was just a baby then! But things change when a former slave calling himself the Right Reverend Zephariah W. Connerly the Third steals money from Elijah's friend Mr. Leroy, who has been saving to buy his family out of captivity in the South. Elijah joins Mr. Leroy on a dangerous journey to America in pursuit of the disreputable preacher, and he discovers firsthand the unimaginable horrors of the life his parents have fled a life from which he'll always be free, if he can find the courage to get back home. Exciting yet evocative, heart-wrenching yet hilarious, Elijah of Buxton is Christopher Paul Curtis at his very best and it's an unforgettable testament to the power of hope.

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From the Publisher

Master storyteller Christopher Paul Curtis lends his trademark humour and vibrant narrative style to the gripping tale of eleven-year-old Elijah Freeman. The first child born into freedom in Buxton, Ontario, a settlement of runaway slaves just over the border from Detroit, Elijah is best known in his hometown as the boy who threw up on...

Christopher Paul Curtis was born in Flint, Michigan. After high school graduation, he worked on the assembly line of the Fisher Body Plant for 13 years, until Christopher took a year off work to write his first novel. The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963 won a Newbery Honor and a Coretta Scott King Honor book citation in 1996. Bud, ...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:368 pages, 7.58 × 5.27 × 0.81 inPublished:February 1, 2009Publisher:SCHOLASTIC INCLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0439023459

ISBN - 13:9780439023450

Appropriate for ages: 9

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Lovely The age range says 7-9 but I loved the book and I am a few years over that. It takes a little while to get to the problem (more than halfway through the book) but there are a lot of laughs to get you there. The voice of Elijah is hilarious. I especially love the part about the hoop snakes. But this story is also very serious at times, and may make you want to cry, then laugh, then cry. Highly recommended.
Date published: 2010-05-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Book! Christopher Paul Curtis has written an amazing book about an eleven year old boy named Elijah who was the first freeborn child in Buxton. His parents were former slaves in America along wih almost every other resident in Buxton. Elijah finds himself getting into situations that he shouldn't be in with his friend Cooter or with the Preacher. Elijah learns a great deal of knowledge through his adventure in this book relating to slavery and life lessons themselves. Elijah doesn't know how slavery can impact someone's life tremendously except for the little he hears through the community. Elijah has great talent for chunking stones and finds that he can be fra-gile much of the time, but when times call him to be strong he pulls through. This book is an enjoyable adventure for parents and their children to read together so that they can learn life lessons together. This book can be a little frustrating because of the dialect used but once the reader gets a hang of it, the book is a quick read. Children can relate to Elijah through many of the obstacles that he face, such as tall tales told to scare and whether to believe them or not. Children will also relate times that they misused or spoke a word that was not to be spoken and getting yelled at for it. Everyone who has ever been oppressed can also relate to the book and how important it is to gain the freedom that you once longed for. This story is humorous, but enduring as well. A great deal of knowledge can be learned by following Elijah on his journey from being a boy to becoming the adult he must be.
Date published: 2009-02-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Interesting and enjoyable The writing style of Christopher Paul Curtis seems like that of a “storyteller” and at times it's very funny, as the story is told from the perspective of a sweet, "frag-ile" 11 year old boy. There are some very touching moments as well, when we find out some of the details of the earlier lives of some of the people who escaped from slavery to settle in Buxton, near Chatham, Ontario in the mid-1800s. This is a good read for young people (or adults) who are interested in the Underground Railroad and the settlements of slaves in Canada so many years ago.
Date published: 2009-01-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An Emotional Book This book tells a tale of pioneer life in Ontario during the year 1859. But these are not your ordinary pioneers. Buxton is a Black Settlement, inhabited mostly by escaped slaves from the Southern United States. This is a warm, touching and humorous look at the day-to-day life of these people as they adjust and learn to lead a life of freedom. The escapades of the main character, Elijah, reminded me of the "Great Brain" books and I laughed out loud many times. But alongside this new life of freedom we also witness the horrors of slavery and the mind boggles at the reality of it. I cried with tears of joy when newly escaped slaves arrived to the settlement. I was stupefied at the inhumanity as free-born Elijah travels to Michigan and witnesses slaves in chains. I felt proud of my country when I learned that Canada was once called the 'land of milk and honey' and 'the land of the free'. This is an emotional book. I highly recommend this book to both Canadians and Americans as a part of our combined history.
Date published: 2007-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fabulous Read I recently read this book and its one of the most enjoyable books I have read. You definitely get a picture of what life was like for the people in the settlement. I am now planning a visit to the Buxton Museum for my family, just to see what this place looks like today, and somehow reconnect with the characters I read about. I would recommend this book to anyone looking for information about the settlement of escape slaves from US to Canada.
Date published: 2007-11-05