Sarah's Stars

Gary Paulson. The Rifle
Harcourt  $7.95  ISBN 0-15-205839-7  108 pg.
Reviewed by Mathew, Age 12

In 1768, a gunsmith named Cornish McManus creates a rifle so accurate, that, when tested, shot three shots into the same hole from thirty yards. Then he sells it to a man named John Byam hoping to have some money to start a family, and Byam uses it in the war against the redcoats. When John Byam dies however, the rifle becomes property of several people throughout the generations. Finally, a mechanic named Harv receives it as payment for repairs on a motor home. Placing it above his fireplace, Harv leaves it up as a decoration. Then, something terrible happens.

Gary Paulson is author of The Rifle, and also the Newbery Honor-winning author of the book Hatchet. Paulson has written many other titles including: Worksong, Puppies, Dogs, and Blue Northers, The Tent, The Tortilla Factory, Sisters/ Hermanas, The Car, and Harris And Me: A Summer Remembered. I feel that Gary Paulson is an amazing author, who can make fiction seem like non-fiction.

I would recommend this book for people over 12 because there is not only a more difficult vocabulary, but you have to imagine what it would be like to live in the 1760s. Although this book is not a bad-guy versus good-guy story, it is still very interesting because of the amount of information that you learn about rifles while reading it.

This reviewer gives The Rifle three deadly accurate stars.


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