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3.68 of 5 stars 3.68  ·  rating details  ·  85 ratings  ·  12 reviews

With the United States on the verge of civil war, Elijah Tully and his father ride out of Kansas as Jayhawkers, guerrilla fighters against slavery. After his father is killed, Lije goes undercover among the proslavery bushwhackers. Swept into a grisly raid, Lije unexpectedly stands face-to-face with his father's killer -- but is veng...more
Paperback, 214 pages
Published October 19th 1995 by HarperCollins (first published October 1st 1991)
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Miss Amanda
gr 5-8 202 pgs

Kansas,early 1860s. 12 year old Elijah wants to be a jayhawker, riding into slave state Missouri freeing slaves and fighting with pro slavery bushwhackers, just like his father. When Elijah's father invites him along, Elijah is thrilled. But the mission goes horribly wrong and Elijah's father is killed. Then Elijah is offered an opportunity to become a spy with a group of bushwhackers including Jesse James, Charley Quantrill, and Jim Hickok. Elijah accepts.

Really interesting story!
I really liked Jayhawker, another in a group of civil war historical novels written by Patricia Beatty. The main character is a young preteenage boy who has moved to Kansas with his family to help stop the spread of slavery into Kansas and to help free Missouri slaves. When his father is killed in a raid into Missouri, he is taken by abolitionists into Missouri to join Quantrill's raiders as a spy. His experiences lead him into meeting the Youngers, Jesse James and others who were part of Quanti...more
Zach Naegele
In this book Elijah Tulley, aka Lije, is growing up during the Civil War. As a young boy, before the Civil War begins, Lije joins his father in caring for the family farm in Kansas. He learns to ride horses and how to shoot as well. Lije’s father, Absalom, joins several other men in making runs to Missouri to free slaves. Men who make these runs to retrieve slaves from Missouri and bring them back to Kansas are called Jayhawkers. Finally Lije is old enough to join his father on these midnight ru...more
Elijah Tully’s family lives in Kansas just over the Missouri line. His parents are staunch abolitionists and want Kansas to be a slave-free state. Elijah’s father goes on slave stealing (also called liberating runs) with John Brown, the famous abolitionist. ON a raid into Missouri, Elijah sees his father and their neighbor killed. Elijah is severely beaten. Eventually Elijah is recruited by the abolitionists to be a spy in Missouri. Elijah stays at a slave owner’s house and listens for informati...more
Majed Alorene
Hi Nancy here are two answers for questions 9 and 13.
I read 202 pages.

Q 9: the first quistion for Lije's father, he said proudly "Mr. Brown, that's exactly what we are,soldiers. That's what Lije'll be" The question is "if Lije twelve years only why you encourage him to be a solder? Are you pessimist for the war with Missourian?

My question for the author how can a young boy in the age of thirteen to become a warrior, and he could not fight in this age, do you think best if he is at least eightee...more
Patricia Beatty does a fabulous job writing about Kansas' violent history. She gives life to "bleeding Kansas". The main character, Lije Tulley, endures death, fear, and living under an alias. He works to free slaves from Missouri and aid the Union Army. Beatty, uses realistic situations and historically accurate events to help bring life to this great Kansas book. Other significant characters are Frank and Jesse James, Charley Quantrill, and Jim Hickock. Most of the story takes place near Lawre...more
Sarah Hazlett
I really enjoyed this book since it is about the area where I live. I have visit many of the towns and study all of the historical characters. Even my home town is mentioned. But even if you don't live in the KS/MO area it is a interesting because it is very good example of what "Bleeding Kansas" was like.
Catherine  Mustread
Grades 5+. At the beginning of the Civil War, Kansas farm boy becomes a jayhawker, an abolitionist raider freeing slaves from Missouri, and then goes undercover as a spy.
This book is really good. Lije is a very determined and courageous boy who wants to help with abolition. The book is very interesting to read.
An excellent story about a boy fighting in the Civil War. Good story for upper elementary students
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From Contemporary Authors Online: "Patricia Beatty's historical children's fiction invites readers to share in her fascination with the past. Reflecting her interest in meticulous research, which she likened to detective work, her stories recreate past times for modern readers. Critics cite her strong sense of humor, as well as a sharp sense of place, as strong points of her fiction. A committed f...more
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