Just David
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Just David

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  374 ratings  ·  70 reviews
Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. We are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.
Paperback, 354 pages
Published July 11th 2011 by Clapham Press (first published 1916)
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(showing 1-30 of 656)
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Janiece
Wow! This is truly a beautiful story...one of those that I will return to again and again. Well written. Beautifully poetic, metaphorical and inspiring. A true classic. Sad that it was ever forgotten and out of print. Move this to the top of your to-read list.

When David was four, his father took him to live in the mountains where he taught David of the beautiful things in life. They learned from nature and from books and from music. It was an exceptional education. When David was ten, his father...more
Zachary Lawrence
“Just David” is a great a book. I would recommend it to a violinist. David is a ten year old boy who doesn’t know his last name. His dad died on the side of the road. Just before he died, he gave David a sack full of large gold coins and told him to hide them until needed. A man named Simeon Holly found him sitting on the side of the road playing a violin to his “sleeping” father. Simeon, realizing the man is dead; he and his wife try to figure out the boy’s name. He tells them he is “just David...more
Nancy St. Clair
Dec 19, 2011 Nancy St. Clair rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Nancy St. Clair by: Teresa Scott
Recently orphaned and idyllic by nature, David is taken in by the Hollys. Though only 10 years old, he is determined to fulfill his father's wishes, to find and do his beautiful work that is awaiting him out in the world. It is through his searching for this mission that many lives are forever changed. The story of Just David offers hope and beauty in an innocent and childlike way while continually encouraging the reader to "count no hours but the unclouded ones".
Sara
Perhaps idealistic, but very sweet and unjaded. Can life really be like that--why not!?! It was a book group read and I really enjoyed the sweet character of David and his unselfishness. The Author is also the author of Pollyanna.
Elizabeth
David and his father have always lived on the mountain, but one day his father tells him to pack, they must leave their cabin. David’s father becomes more tired and sick as the journey progresses, and finally dies in the barn of a farmer and his wife. The farmer and his wife don’t know what to make of this small boy, who “plays the look of the dew on wet grass” on his violin, and refuses to powder the potatoes from the striped bugs because they look so beautiful. David; raised in innocence, with...more
Charlotte
This is an old, old favorite. It was a favorite of my grandmother's, and my father's, and it became a favorite of mine...three generations! My mother read aloud to us from her old and very battered copy when I was young, and I managed many years ago to obtain a old and battered copy of my own to read aloud to my children. Now it appears that it is back in print!

Just David is a heartwarming tale of a boy - David - the son of a famous musician, whose father takes him at a young age to live on a mo...more
Jessica
My grandma gave her 1916 copy of this book to my daughter for Christmas, and I borrowed it for just a bit. It's written by Eleanor Porter, the author of Pollyanna, and has many parallels to that classic story; a special, orphaned child with a positive attitude ends up blessing the lives of an entire town. If you love Pollyanna or grew up watching the Disney version (I think I like the movie even better than the book), then you're bound to enjoy this little lost gem. It is very sweet, very old-fa...more
DoriAnn Haskins
I read this first several years ago in a book group, and later reread it on my own. I am waiting just a little longer before I read it with my own young, violin playing sons. I think they will love it. I love it when, as this one does, a book both transports and also inspires me to be a better person.
Andrea
The book is about a ten year old boy who has been raised in the mountains by his father. He teaches him to “play” the beauty he finds in the world on his violin, and only exposes him to things that are beautiful and good. He teaches him that he has a “great work” to do in the world, and the story is about David’s attempt to discover what that work is. I loved this book. It was a very simple, story. It was written more for older children, but the message in it was so pure and uplifting. It made m...more
Debbie
I'm a big fan of Disney's "Pollyanna" movie and this is the author of the Pollyanna book, too. This book is definitely the male counterpart to the Pollyanna book. Similar theme, different scenario. A young boy taken to live in the mountains by his father at the age of 4 to learn the violin and the beauty of the earth without worldly distraction. At the age of 10 was then thrust into the world because of his fathers death. Taken in by a Farmer and his wife, David makes a difference in the lives o...more
Kassie
A sweet story. I loved that David's father taught him so much and gave him such a optimistic, positive childhood, away from the world/society and it's distractions and darker side. Sometimes I'd like to do the same for my own children. But when David was thrown into the world, he seemed ill prepared for it and was not able to communicate well. I believe it is important for all to be able to communicate to those around us.
I did love the idea that we all have a part in the 'symphony' and that we...more
Barbara
I'd never heard of this book before. It was suggested by a neighbor whose Mother read it for her book club. It was written by the author of Pollyanna in 1916 and wasn't as popular as Pollyanna. The powers that be in bookdom decided to repint it, thankfully. It is truly one of the best books I've ever read in spite of using one descriptive word a little too often. I'm going to get a hard copy of it as I read it on my Kindle. It's a fast read about a 10 year old boy so the whole family can enjoy i...more
Tina Cook
Wonderful book! Read aloud to my family and we all loved it!
Annie Kate
At first my teens scoffed that this was sentimental Victorian literature, but by the end of the book they were enjoying it and were deeply involved. The book had improved by then, too, and involved more action and real emotion and less 'sappy' elements.

This is a sweet story about an idealistic little orphan violinist who changes the town that takes him in. If you read many books out loud to your children, add this one; if you read only a few out loud, don't let Just David crowd out a better book...more
Gail Mcconnell
Such a wonderful book....my grandmothers favorite.
Kyle
This is an interesting story of a young boy raised to know only good, yet as the story unfolds he encounters injustice, poverty, sadness, dashed hopes, and many other things that mar the natural beauty of God's creation.

Although this is a rather simple story, it does take a few interesting turns, and it may even cause you to look at the world through David's eyes to truly see all the beautiful things around you.

I think this is a great story to share with your kids, and with anyone you love tha...more
Julia
Jun 19, 2008 Julia rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 8-12 years old
Written by the same author who wrote Pollyanna. Wonderful book, with wonderful messages, but much like Pollyanna, the child David, who is the main character, is similarly over the top with his cheerfulness and positive attitude. Positive attitude is a great thing, but in this case maybe a bit too much. I expected that going into it, however, since I knew it was written by the author of Pollyanna, so I was able to just soak up all that was good in the book without being put off by the sugary swee...more
Kris Irvin
This is a sweet little story. At times it does get a bit saccharine, but if you keep in mind the time period and the audience it was written for, it's not bad. I love David's character and am planning on giving this book to my son when he's old enough!

I could NOT find this book anywhere - so I ended up reading it online at Project Gutenberg. I think if I had had a chance to read it in real-book form, I would have liked it just a teensy bit better and thus given it five stars.
Tasha
We all loved this book! A bit predictable in parts, my kids were even guessing what was going on, but a lovely story of goodness and funding joy in the world.
Jennifersadler
I enjoyed this book throughly. This was written in the early 1900s. The story is about a boy, age 10, who has been raised by his father in a secluded mountain home. The father is ill and needs to bring the boy to family to finish raising him. He dies too soon. A mountain village is forced to care for the boy. During his life in this village the boy is considered "odd". But you find how the boy's perpective of life changes this town forever. Excellent reading.
Shannon
Just David is a less known book written by the author of Pollyanna. It is a sweet story about a boy whose father tries to protect him from the evil, wicked, and even sad things of the world and then what happens when the boy is thrust into "normal" society. A little idealistic and maybe even naive, but also makes you think about how well we do/should support the innocence of our children. It's a fast read and a good boo to read with the family.
Christy
I absolutely love this story. I read it several years ago in one long sitting and it warmed my heart. We just finished it as a read a loud with the kids and it was just as good. David's wide eye enthusiasm and never ending enrichment is an inspiration. Although written in a language that anyone from 3rd grade on can manage I would recommend this read to adults as well.
Michelle
I really loved this book. It is not great literature in a classic sense, but more in an inspiring sense, maybe like "Pilgrim's Progress." I related all too well to the sensitive, naive protagonist but was humbled by his choice to live well even when misunderstood and in serious adversity. This book was just what I needed at a difficult time.
Tiffany
Written by the author of Pollyanna and in a similar vein: a child who unassumingly changes a town for the better. Only this child is a boy (David).

However, there is enough difference to make this book worth reading. It has a positive and light hearted flavor. And it doesn't hurt that there is a little bit of a mystery in it.
Amy  Adelseck
What a sweet book. This was another family read aloud. I loved where the thoughts in this book lead our time together. The kids really liked it. Avery wasn't as happy with the ending and Carson said the ending was ok, but it needed another book to follow. So the whole book was great, it just lack a great ending.
Eileen
A boy and his father live alone on a mountain. The father is ill and they start down to the village below but the father dies on the way. No one knows who this boy is or where he came from but he enters the lives and hearts of many people in the town before the search for his relatives is over. Heart-warming.
Rebekah
I just finished reading this to my kids (11, 8, 6 & 4.) It took us a while to get going, but by the time we finished it we loved it. I love it because it is a book with rich language, full of beautiful goodness! Like Pollyanna, David is almost too good, but isn't that what we should be exposing our kids to?
Dave Law
A beautiful story about how innocence and goodness can change the world, or at least the parts touched by a young orphan. Personally, I found the story much more enjoyable than Pollyanna and yet this appears to be mostly forgotten or simply thought of as Pollyanna as a boy, which doesn't do it justice.
Nickie
This is a treasure every family should read. This is a novel about love for learning. Sadly the father dies and the son never knew his family yet carries a letter and a Strata- various violin which he can play. The mystery is finally solved by the black sheep of the adoptive family.
Stephanie
This book is what you would expect from the author who wrote "Pollyanna." Even with her expected optimism, it's hard to believe that the main character could be for real; however, it does offer some interesting perspectives to think about. A very warm, feel-good, easy read.
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