Could a playful kiss on the cheek from a world-famous Revolutionary War hero change the life of a troubled young girl in 1825 New England?
A Buss from Lafayette, called "a winning historical tale" by Kirkus Reviews, shows how it could have happened.
The protagonist, Clara Hargraves (14) is ". . .a tomboyish, quick-witted girl who ... makes the pages of the book come to life."- Red City Review (paperback, e-book, audiobook, & teacher's guide available)
"A full scale history lesson disguised as a can't put it down story." I Read What You Write Blog
Gold Medalist (Middle School/Historical Fiction), 2017 Literary Classics Award
1st Place Winner (Historical Fiction), 2017 Purple Dragonfly Book Awards
Bronze Medalist (Juvenile/Young Adult Fiction), 2017 eLit Awards
Quarter Finalist, 2016 Booklife Prize (Middle Grade) One of the top 10 MG entries!
Seal of Approval Recipient, 2017 Literary Classics Awards
Named on the Grateful American Kids website as one of the best history books for kids to read
Fourteen-year-old Clara Hargraves lives on a farm in Hopkinton, a small New Hampshire town, during the early
Dorothea Jensen, born in Boston, Massachusetts, grew up in Chillicothe, Illinois. She majored in English literature at Carleton College. After teaching high-school English and serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Brazil, she earned a master’s degree in education at the University of New Mexico. In 1989, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich published Dorothea’s novel for young readers about the American Revolution, The Riddle of Penncroft Farm. In addition to other honors, it was named an International Reading Association Teacher’s Choices Selection and is read in classrooms throughout the U.S. A Buss from Lafayette is set in the small New Hampshire town where Dorothea lives. Two things inspired her to write this story. First was learning that Lafayette passed right by her house during his 1824-5 “Triumphal Tour.” Another was meeting a woman whose ancestor received a kiss from Lafayette. That “buss,” passed down through generations, eventually came to Dorothea. This sparked her Interest in Lafayette’s contributions to our struggle for independence. Dorothea also enjoys writing rhyming verse. She has written a series of award-winning illustrated modern Christmas stories in verse featuring Santa’s Izzy Elves.
"[T]his novel is well-researched . . . . Jensen still manages to deliver a lot of historical facts without dull exposition—it’s perfectly plausible, for instance, that the adults in Clara’s life would tell her stories about Lafayette’s exploits, and her curiosity becomes infectious. Jensen also includes a glossary and bibliography for further reading. A winning historical tale that may appeal to young fans of the musical Hamilton." —Kirkus Reviews
"Our aim is to show them how a story can 'send' them on fascinating, exciting and adventurous journeys whenever they want." —David Bruce Smith, gratefulamericanbookprize.com
"A Buss from Lafayette is a charming work of fiction with many historical facts peppered throughout the novel." —red city review