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Time Enough for Drums

4.09  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,041 Ratings  ·  192 Reviews
Sixteen-year-old Jem struggles to maintain the status quo at home in Trenton, New Jersey, when the family men join the war for independence.

There are signs of rebellion in the Emerson household several years before the actual American Revolution hits in 1776! Brought up in a relatively liberal household, Jemima Emerson is quite a challenge for her tutor, John Reid, who is
Paperback, 256 pages
Published May 9th 2000 by Laurel Leaf (first published January 1st 1986)
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Michelle Isenhoff
Ann Rinaldi has become a household name in YA historical fiction, and this is one of her most acclaimed books. It’s been on my reading list for some time. The year is 1775, and fifteen-year-old Jemima Emerson is a headstrong young lady. She’s not a bad child; she simply doesn’t think before she acts, and Mr. John Reid, her tutor (and a hated Tory), is determined to turn her into a lady. She resists with everything she has.

But war has a way of making one grow up. Jem’s brother, Daniel, fulfills a
There were some great moments in this book. I loved how Jemima would, in the middle of a mind rant about how much she hated her tutor John Reid, mention his good looks, or muscular arms...
He was beastly and I hated him. We did geography and French and Latin and sums for four hours while Raymond's letter sat between us.
....Oh he knew he was handsome, all right. He strutted about the room when he lectured on geography or listened to my French and Latin pronunciation, ever aware of the breadth of h
Sep 11, 2009 Sarah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought this was quite good, but felt that the romance between Jem and John Reid resolved too quickly. I enjoyed the romantic tension that was sizzling between them at the start but by only about 1/3 of the way through they'd declared their love for each other and he'd nicked off leaving her pining for him at home, NOT as fun!
Although on that note, he did seem to enjoy excercising his power over her a LITTLE bit too much, plus the fact that he was nine years older than her and she was only 15
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I finally wrote up a review of this book! It's an old favorite! I wrote it up for my blog, Books from Bleh to Basically Amazing (and, it looks/reads better there, because all the HTML is viewable! :) )

Time Enough for Drums is the one of three reasons I decided in 8th grade that it was okay to read and enjoy more than murder mysteries. (Robin McKinley is reason one and two but more on that later.) Because this book is one that I credit with vastly expanding my literary horizons, I'm going to tell
Sep 02, 2010 Patriot rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I LOVED this book!!!!!! All thanks to dear Kelsey, who gave it to me as a wonderful birthday present! It was such a refreshing breeze to be able to read a really good book after the last two I read, which were both pretty poor. But "Time Enough For Drums" was excellent; Ann Rinaldi did an AWESOME job of making it suspenseful and dramatic--and romantic too:) I would highly recommend it!
Mar 09, 2015 Britt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was such a great book! All of the historical facts were acurate, so that naturally made a history nerd like me really happy. I loved John and Jem's relationship, as well as her relationship with her brothers. This book was such a good read!
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This is a well written historical romance set in Trenton during the Revolutionary War. The characters come alive as well as the war during that time period. Jemima, a teenage girl, wages constant war with her tutor, John Reid, a supposed Tory. Her brothers are Patriots who go off to fight with Washington, her sister is married to a British officer, and her mother secretly writes pro-rebel essays for the paper. Ann Rinaldi is a real expert at telling an interesting and compelling fictional story ...more
Sep 28, 2012 AlixJamie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The only thing I didn't like about this book was that the main character, Jemima, was supposed to be "spirited". Unfortunately her "spirited" actions were mostly outright disobedience. Other than that, the romance is sweet and clean, the dialog is well written, and the characters are very likable. I do remember writing in my journal that if I were the author I would have made Jemimah hate Mr. Ried a lot longer than she did, because that part of the book was the best. :) That's just my opinion th ...more
Rank in My Top Ten: # 3
Why in My Top Ten: I think this is one of the best historical fictions of all time, though I'm sort of biased because I kind of grew up with this book. I first read it when I was 12 and have read it at least 25 times since then. It is a young adult novel, so the book's themes are tailored for that age group. However, the story of how the revolutionary war affects a 16 year-old girl's family and friends still captivates me every time, even 13 years later. The love story is
Sarah Crawford
Feb 01, 2016 Sarah Crawford rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Time Enough for Drums

This is another historical book from Ann Rinaldi that deals with the Revolutionary War. Jemina Emerson is 15, a Patriot, and a rather headstrong and opinionated young girl. John Reid, a supposed Tory, is hired to be her tutor, and for a good while things do not go well between them.

Things get more complicated as the town, already split between Tories and Patriots, has to endure armies of both sides coming through the town. The Hessians, fighting on the side of the British, s
Aug 14, 2015 Cathy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I first read this book in 7th grade and immediately fell in love with it. I'm not normally one to like historical fiction, but something about this book resonated with me. Throughout my high school years, I returned to re-read this book several times, when college came along, I pushed it to the back of my mind. Fast-forward several years and I was searching through Amazon when I found this book and bought it immediately. I have since re-read several times and find myself going back to this book ...more
Dec 02, 2014 Rose rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rachel M.
Jul 26, 2011 Rachel M. rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorite-books
I love this book! Of all the Ann Rinaldi books I've read, this is definitely my favorite! Unlike most of her other novels, it isn't depressing, although there are some sad parts. John Reid is an awesome character, while Jemima is annoying for most of the book. However, she becomes more mature as the Revolutionary War progresses, and by the end of the novel, she becomes a lady. I think it's really cool that Rinaldi's son and daughter posed for the cover of this book as John and Jemima.
May 02, 2010 Kelli rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a good historical novel. My favorite of Ann Rinaldi's. She is an amazing history writer. When I was younger I used to scale the library for any new books by her. She was my favorite writer and I still reread my favorites that she has written. This book is about the Revolutionary War in New Jersey. It sort of has a Pride and Prejudice undertone (but most good love stories do). An awesome book.
Jul 04, 2012 Melinda rated it it was amazing
This is one of my favorite books. It is a heartouching novel about a young girl, Jemima, who is going through her teenage years during the Revolutionary war. She faces many challenges - one of which is trying to understand how her parents can befriend her tutor, John Reid, who is known as a Tory and has strong ties to England. She faces the challenges of the war, love, friendship and family.
Nov 27, 2010 Olivia rated it really liked it
I read this back in my teens. Jemima is a young girl during the Revolutionary War. She is being tutored by a family friend who is a tory which infuriates her. As time goes by she stumbles across some information that changes her whole world and how she views it. It's a wonderful book filled with drama and wistfull romance.
emma grace
Really liked it!!! I did feel that the writing was a little undeveloped; some parts seemed a little choppy...the author probably didn't spend a lot of time writing it.

I really did enjoy the story though; Jem and John were so perfect for each other!!!! ;)
This is a young adult/ teen historical fiction book. It is interesting as it is set in New Jersey in Princeton during the Revolutionary War (most books like this are set in Boston or Virginia). The protagonist, Jemima, is a strong-willed teenager who grows up during the tragedies of the Revolutionary War. The author Rinaldi teaches many events throughout the novel while creating a teen romance type melodrama between Jemima and her tutor. It was a little challenging to read as it is a little old- ...more
Courtney Landreau
May 24, 2016 Courtney Landreau rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a book I read in middle school and have continued to read since then. It was the first book I have ever read that immediately made me want to read it all over again. It was also the first book that fell apart from my constant reading. I replaced the paperback copy four times before I finally bought a hardback one to prevent that from ever occurring again. This is a beautiful story which deals with love, family, a girl's stubborn will and perseverance. I highly recommend it to anyone who ...more
My childhood favorite, this book has had a lasting impression on my adult reading habits.
Jessica (Lovin' Los Libros)
I remember reading this book when I was younger, and I just LOVED it. I have always been a historical fiction girl and read tons of it when I was younger. Since I am all about Hamilton the musical right now, I found myself wanting to reread this one as it is set during the Revolutionary War.

Jem isn't an easy character to like at first. She's stubborn as all get out and can be quite childish. There are times when I wanted to shake her because she would say things that proved her immaturity. I th
Kristy K
I originally read Time Enough for Drums fifteen years a go. I was going through an American Revolution phase, discovered this book at the library and fell in love. I must have read it five or six times in the span of three years. Then, I got busy with other books and genres and this book went to the back of my mind. However, every once in a while, I'd think about it again, but no longer could remember the title or author. Finally, I took to Google and Goodreads and lucked out in rediscovering th ...more
I read this novel after completing Rinaldi's, The Last Silk Dress, and honestly it felt like the same story only transferred into the American Revolution time period. However, it was very enjoyable. Jemima is a young woman attempting to be accepted as a lady, however she is very stubborn in her rebel ways. She loves the patriot cause, and is disgusted by the politics of her Tory tutor, until she comes accross documents proving that John is actually a spy for Washington. Holding this precious inf ...more
*This review originally appeared here at Tripping Over Books*

Oh, baby! American Revolution! I love this shizz so hard guys, I don’t know that all of my nerding out could even convey the full breadth of my fascination with it. It’s just an amazing time to me. So when I was wandering around Goodreads, I happened upon some Ann Rinaldi books, and I soon discovered TIME ENOUGH FOR DRUMS, after it was strongly recommended to me by Tara from Hobbitses. I couldn’t get it from my library fast enough. Bec
I found this to be very enjoyable and engaging. The short chapters made it hard to put down; I kept telling myself I'd read just one more chapter! The heroine sometimes did stupid things, such as disobeying her father, but she gets a little better as the novel progresses.

I didn't expect this to be as much of a romance as it was. (view spoiler)
Jun 15, 2010 Kailia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first Ann Rinaldi book I have ever read and I loved it. I've always loved Historical Fiction so this was a great find for me.
This book begins in 1775 Trenton, New Jersey with Jem Emerson, our protagonist. From the beginning I can tell she is a head strong, strong willed, feisty girl. But it was also notable that she knew something was going to happen in the future.
As the American Revolution takes full flight, Jem is afraid that her family is going to be torn apart as there is signs of rebell
Great historical fiction read, for kids ages 10-14. Use to teach the American Revolution unit in history class.

Time Enough For Drums was set in the 1700s during the Revolutionary War time. I like being able to see the War through a different perspective. Jem, a 15-year-old girl is telling the story. I thought the book was interesting because it also noted significant historical events while still keeping you hooked. During the end of the book, though it started getting very sappy and a lot of di
Jun 03, 2015 Rachel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-1-12
I was completely swept away with the patriotic feelings as I read this book. The love story took me by surprise, though when the two lovers finally got together I could not put the book down. I found myself up late to finish the story. Adding to the relationships between the two lovers there was a great love of family and friends.

Some of the subjects discussed in this book was that of slavery, loyalty, racism and death. Jem, the main character deals with all of these as she navigates her way th
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Ann Rinaldi Fan Club: Time Enough for Drums 1 5 Jul 07, 2013 07:48PM  
  • Just Jane: A Daughter of England Caught in the Struggle of the American Revolution
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  • Annie, Between the States
  • The Claim (Boston Jane, #3)
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  • San Francisco Earthquake, 1906
  • The Sherwood Ring
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  • Cannons at Dawn: The Second Diary of Abigail Jane Stewart, Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, 1779 (Dear America)
  • Calico Captive
  • Two Girls of Gettysburg
  • Carney's House Party/Winona's Pony Cart (Deep Valley, #1 & #3)
  • Once On This Island (Mackinac Island Trilogy, #1)
  • No Shame, No Fear (No Shame, No Fear #1)
  • A Coal Miner's Bride: The Diary of Anetka Kaminska, Lattimer, Pennsylvania, 1896 (Dear America)
  • On Fortune's Wheel (Tales of the Kingdom, #2)
Ann Rinaldi (b. August 27, 1934, in New York City) is a young adult fiction author. She is best known for her historical fiction, including In My Father's House, The Last Silk Dress, An Acquaintance with Darkness, A Break with Charity, and Hang a Thousand Trees with Ribbons. She has written a total of forty novels, eight of which were listed as notable by the ALA. In 2000, Wolf by the Ears was lis ...more
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