Blood on the River: James Town, 1607
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Blood on the River: James Town, 1607

3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  1,746 ratings  ·  294 reviews
Twelve-year-old Samuel Collier is a lowly commoner on the streets of London. So when he becomes the page of Captain John Smith and boards the Susan Constant, bound for the New World, he can’t believe his good fortune. He’s heard that gold washes ashore with every tide. But beginning with the stormy journey and his first contact with the native people, he realizes that the...more
Kindle Edition, 260 pages
Published (first published May 4th 2006)
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Oct 27, 2008 Meghan rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Historical Fiction Fans
I read this book for my history class. At first I thought it would be a boing read, but it wasn't. The characters were real people from James Town and it was very well researched. I usually don't like reading about James Town because people always make up things about Pocahantas. Hardly anyone believes me, but she is my great great great great (I don't know how many) grandmother. This story didn't make up any silly stories about her falling in love with John Smith. The story is told from the vie...more
I read this with my son's 5th grade class.

I really enjoyed this book. It was so engaging and well researched. I could of read this in just a few days because the story flows so well.

My son said he would of rated it 4 stars as well. It makes me happy that he enjoyed it just as much as I did.
This review pertains to the Kindle edition.

Following his mother’s death, twelve-year old Sam Collier (based upon the real page to Captain Smith) is living on the streets of London (ca.1607). Sam’s adventure begins with his desire to regain possession of his deceased mother’s locket. After breaking into a pawnshop to retrieve it, he lands jail. Instead of a harsher fate in the legal system, the Reverend John Hunt finds placement into an orphanage. Along with two other boys from the orphanage, Sam...more
First of all, this is a book for young readers (10-13?). Anyway, I read it in hopes of finding a novel that might enhance my 8th grade American history class. Another teacher had recommended it, but despite my love of historical fiction, I had my doubts. I have found few examples of historical fiction for young people that I have found riveting. I must admit, though, that Blood on the River held my interest, and I enjoyed reading it. It is the story of a young orphaned boy who becomes the page o...more
In Jamestown 1607, a boy fought to survive, that boy was Samuel Collier. He was a hard headed boy with anger issues, that was also very stubborn. This book teaches a lesson about how to curb your anger, and make decisions out of love, not anger. It all starts when he beats up a fellow orphan named Richard who later becomes his best friend. The teachers force him to be Captain John Smiths servant. What a life! He then finds out America's no easy road. My favorite part is when Samuel steals a bab...more
Kevin Persky
I greatly enjoyed this book. This book has a good plot but it also gives a portrayal of what America was like back then. It also is the story of survival. I have found this book so interesting that I have read it multiple times. I would recommend this to just about anyone. It shows a historically accurate portrayal of what life was like yet also has a good plot which prevents it from being boring. I found the book to be very educational and entertaining at the same time. I would recommend this b...more
I just love historical fiction. This is a well written historical fiction that is well researched and holds very close to the facts with fascinating real characters. Samuel Collier is a lowly commoner on the street of London who is shipped off to the New World instead going to jail as the page for Captain John Smith. You may remember that Jamestown was the first permanent English settlement in the New World and life was very precarious. We learn about the hardships the settlers faced and their e...more
Historical Fiction. First English Settlers at James Town and their interactions with the Native Americans. I just finished reading this one to my children and it was riveting. Carbone also included a section at the end detailing her research.
Kim Dixon
This has been one of my favorite books since I was 12. I checked it out of my middle school's library on a whim and I've been in love with it since. The fact that the main character was a boy around my own age added to my love.
I reread it a few days ago to see if I still loved it as much, and I still do. It's brilliant because it's not like most books because it comes from a different perspective, that of a preteen boy. You can see how the class system of 17th century England was, and how it ch...more
it says a lot of things about Jamestown settlement its depressing and its funny in a way.
Its grussom too and it has some love into it.
Read this for the first time with my Language Arts fifth graders during April and May 2009. It was a very good book.
Nice book for elementary-school-aged kids based on primary sources. A lot of the students who come through the museum where I work read it, therefore I picked it up to gauge how much they know about the foundation of Jamestown and relations between English colonists and Powhatan Indians. I gave it five starts for colorful, likeable characters; for staying true to what historians believe actually happened (no, John Smith did not have a torrid love affair with 10-year-old Pocohantas!); and for tre...more
The is a fascinating rendering of the origins of the colony of Jamestown based on the actual characters who were part of it all. Key character is Samuel Collier, about 14 years of age, who is slated to become a page to Captain John Smith. Smith teaches young Samuel to use both a sword and a musket as well as arranging for him to live a winter with a friendly Indian tribe to understand how to survive the ravages of winter in this new land.

The feisty Samuel is fiercely loyal to Smith whose humble...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Blood on the River is the tale of Samuel Collier, an actual settler of the James Town colony in 1607. In Elisa Carbone’s telling, the young orphaned Collier becomes the page to Captain John Smith and soon finds himself on board the ship the Susan Constant, heading towards the New World. The journey is harsh, but the reality of the New World is even harsher. During that first winter Samuel endures hunger, fear and death, but Samuel struggles on. [return][return]Samuel changes from the angry youth...more
Blood on the river by Elisa Carbone is about James Town.
Samuel is a little juvi kid who is always beating someone up.
After he tries tosteal back his mother's necklace, he is sent to a children's home. He and some other boys aregoing to be sent to the new world. Samuel will be a servant boy to captain John Smith! At first he doesn't get along with anyone, but Captain Smith teaches him he cannot stand alone.
Alot of people die. Some are from diseases, others from Indian attacks. But soon the Indian...more
Wayne S.
It is 1606, and Samuel Collier is an eleven-year-old orphan. His father had drunk himself to death, and his mother died in the poorhouse. Upon his mother’s death, her locket was taken to a pawn shop to fetch a little money to cover Samuel’s food. However, Sam runs away from the poorhouse, lives on the streets, and then steals the locket but is caught and turned over to a minister named Hunt who runs an orphanage. It just so happens that Mr. Hunt is accompanying a Virginia Company expedition to...more
Blood on the river
Bajo Zaper
Samuel Collier, a young orphan, becomes Captain John Smith’s page On his journey to the New World. Raised in poor conditions, Sam is street-smart But has a bad temper. He has to learn to control his anger. During the journey on the ship the Susan Constant, Sam begins to learnright from wrong. Samuel also learns how to avoid fights with the other boys on the ship.
His first encounters with the native peoples in
The New World teaches Sam about different perspectives of...more
Mrs. Lynch
This was a solid piece of historical fiction. It is the story of the settlement of Jamestown, Virginia told from the point of view of Samuel Collier, a servant to John Smith. Sam's character starts off as a London street-rat with a bad temper and a chip on his shoulder from his early life experiences. A Reverend selects him and a couple other orphans to work as servants for some Englishmen heading to the Americas for greed (gold) or good (spreading Christianity).

Sam takes a while to warm up to...more
Maha Eldeeb
This story starts off in the streets of England. The main character is named Samuel Collier. He's caught when he tries to steal his mothers locket from a shop. The person who catches him brings him to the ship yard and he took him and said that he is very good and hard worker. He kept him on the ship. There was a very big storm , it was so cold and the houses weren't that strong. There was an Indian tribe that kept coming to trade and a colonist noticed that the Indians had been looking around ....more
Emilie W
Interestingly this main character actually existed! Samuel Collier is a young orphan boy that becomes Captain John Smith's page. Brought up in poor conditions, Samuel is street-smart but also quick-tempered. On his journey to the New World, he learns to control his anger and to use his head instead of his fists. Upon his arrival, his encounters with the native peoples further teach Samuel about different perspectives and about the value of culture. Survival in the new colony tests Samuel as he e...more
Maggie F
It was 1607 in England. A boy named Samuel had been living on the streets for almost his whole life. He was a 13 year old boy who had probably been sent to every orphanage in town, but he had run away from each one. Samuel learned not to trust anyone... Until he met a man named Reverend Hunt. The Reverend tought Sam a lot about god and other important traits to have. After a while Revend Hunt sent Sam on a boat to Virginia as Captin Smith's page boy. There Sam learned the importance of friendsh...more
Max Wexler
400 years ago, a boy fought to survive in the Jamestown... Samuel Collier came from nothing, he literally has not got a penny to his name. His life in the alleys of London change one day, when he is put on a ship set for the New World or as we now know Virginia. He fights for his life against the natives, sickness and even his own friends... He always has his good friend John Smith by his side, for he is his page. The summer of 1607 in Jamestown are just the beginning of the settler's problems i...more
This is an excellent book for elementary-aged students through adults. I may be slightly biased, having been a history major in my undergraduate career, but the book is a wonderful teaching tool if one has an interest in Virginia history, a balanced portrayal of the Jamestown settlement, or is just looking for a quick read based upon actual events.

The book is narrated in the present tense by Samuel Collier, John Smith’s servant during the settlement’s start-up. Samuel is a typical boy who all o...more
Last of the California Young Reader Medal books. Last, and least.

The story, for crying out loud, is Jamestown. First permanent English settlement in America. Bad things happened, it took them a very long time to get on their feet, conditions were really bad...yet the prose and the characters were so boring that I could not bring myself to care. Show the suffering. Flesh out the characters lest they become mere shades of history. The clash of the social classes, typically, portrayed the gentlemen...more
Blood on the River: James Town 1607 by Elisa Carbone is a rich and intriguing historical fiction book about one of the first settlements in the New World. I liked seeing the way the story showed us what this new settlement meant for the native people and the settlers. This book really brought the scene to life and, after reading the author’s note, it was interesting to learn that the characters mentioned in the story are true to history. Anyone who enjoys reading about history will enjoy this bo...more
Every good piece of historical fiction begins with breaking and entering; this story meets the standard. From the strange start the text guides the reader through origins of English settlements in Virginia. Important players in history are introduced through the side door. The main character is the page of Captain John Smith, while Pocahontas appears and disappears throughout the text.

Focus within the novel is upon the strict class division in English society, which is accentuated by the positi...more
I read Raleigh's Page, then decided to read Blood on the River, since they were set in a similar time period, so I could compare the two. I feel Blood on the River was a much stronger story.

Samuel is a scrappy street orphan who is selected to serve Captain John Smith, a commoner who is leading a noblemen's expedition to the New World. Samuel is a loner, and has a hard time making friends and learning to trust others, but he learns from some good role models, Reverend Hunt and Captain Smith, abou...more
"Blood on the River" is the exciting, true story of the founding of the first permanent English colony in America. The story follows a 12-year-old orphan, Samuel, from the streets of London, across the ocean on the "Susan Constant", and to the New World and the new settlement of James Town.

Samuel, one of four boys on the ship, lives as a page to Captain John Smith and encounters daily struggles as they try to survive in the new land. They face starvation, lack of fresh water, and the sometimes...more
Mar 28, 2010 Jill rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who are interested in the history of our wonderful country.
Recommended to Jill by: Rebecca Caudill 2009 list
This book was nominated for the Rebecca Caudill Award in 2009, but I didn't read it that summer because I thought it looked stupid. I actually skipped three that summer - one of which actually won. Now I learned my lesson: read them all!

Anyway, this was a book about the James Town settlement and John Smith and all that business. It was interesting, pretty fast-moving, and I think it would definitely be useful in 5th grade or higher - either for Reading or Social Studies. I didn't love the first-...more
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Elisa Carbone was raised in Arlington, Virginia. She attended college at University of Maryland and also received two master’s degrees from University of Maryland, one in Speech Communication and the other in Education.
She now lives part time in the Washington D.C. area and part time in the mountains of West Virginia.
More about Elisa Carbone...
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