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    Elijah of Buxton

    Elijah of Buxton

    by Christopher Paul Curtis

    Elijah, born into freedom in a Canadian settlement of runaway slaves, ventures on a dangerous journey to the U.S. "An emotional range and a subtlety unusual in children's fiction."—Booklist

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    Elijah of Buxton

    Elijah of Buxton

    by Christopher Paul Curtis

    2008 Newbery Honor Book

    2008 Coretta Scott King Award Winner (Author)

    It's 1860, and eleven-year-old Elijah is a first-generation freeborn child. His Canadian town of Buxton, located just across the border from Detroit, serves as a haven for runaway slaves and their children, where Blacks can live free and govern themselves away from the horrors of pre-emancipation America. When the town's corrupt preacher steals money from a citizen who's been saving to buy his family's freedom, Elijah sets off for Detroit in pursuit. He encounters a group of captured runaway slaves; unable to save them all, he escapes with the youngest--a baby--and returns to Buxton a hero.

    Learn more about Christopher Paul Curtis .

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Elijah of Buxton

Author: Christopher Paul Curtis

Interest Level:

Lexile Framework:

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Guided Reading Level:


Historical Fiction

Slavery, Underground Railroad, Abolition, Equality, Fairness, Justice, Confronting and Resolving Fears, African American, Canada

About This Book

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Master storyteller Christopher Paul Curtis lends his trademark humor and vibrant narrative style to the gripping tale of eleven-year-old Elijah Freeman.

The first child born into freedom in Buxton, Canada, 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 fled — a life from which he'll always be free, if he can find the courage to go 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.

Elijah of Buxton is the winner of the Coretta Scott King Award and a Newbery Honor Book for 2008.

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