Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Devil's Paintbox

The Devil's Paintbox by Victoria McKernan
In 1866, fifteen-year-old Aidan and his thirteen-year-old sister Maddy, penniless orphans, leave drought-stricken Kansas on a wagon train hoping for a better life in Seattle, but find there are still many hardships to be faced.


Madeline J. Bryant/School Library Journal said...

...This action-packed novel has all the elements of a good Western, including lively fight scenes and a main character who becomes a rugged individualist, risking life and limb for a cause he believes in. Fans of wilderness survival stories or adventure sagas will appreciate it most.

Monica Stark said...

...You can’t think what a relief it is. After wading through stacks of the sort of blood-soaked stories currently in vogue, it was delicious to settle in and enjoy Victoria McKernan’s latest historical adventure, The Devil’s Paintbox...a wonderfully crafted story rich in historical detail: you can almost smell the saddle leather; feel the pangs of hunger and the sharp bites of fear. And not a fang or a wand in sight.

Kirkus Reviews said...

...Nothing is pretty, not even the prostitutes plying their trade, and nothing easy, as the hatred and racism of the day are revealed. Viscerally painted, in this narrative smallpox is never as frightening as the greed and hatred, nor are the love and dignity of a few so admirable.