Tolliver’s Secret + The Bronze Bow

Two classics in our homeschool that were a big hit. Tolliver’s Secret by Esther Wood Brady was assigned as a read aloud in our Sonlight core, and all of us loved the story of the girl who dresses like a boy to deliver a secret message to George Washington during the Revolutionary War. There was a lot of action and suspense wondering if Ellen was going to make it, and my 8 year old loved the adventure of it all. It wasn’t the tearjerker that others have been, but just a fun story.

In our homeschool coop, I just finished reading The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare with our 4th/5th graders. What a story! Daniel is a Jewish boy living in Israel at the time of Roman occupation–and at the time of Christ’s public ministry. Daniel yearns for revenge against the Roman oppressors, and hopes that Jesus will be the King leading the Jews to martial victory, but the message of Jesus rocks him to his very core. I wept at the scene when Jesus gently leads Daniel to ask himself whether he could give up his hate to follow Jesus. Speare doesn’t use Bible quotes, but her dialogue reads so true to who Jesus is without being cheesy or preachy. So beautifully done.

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