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The Underground Abductor

(Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales #5)

4.40  ·  Rating details ·  3,031 ratings  ·  410 reviews
Araminta Ross was born a slave in Delaware in the early 19th century. Slavery meant that her family could be ripped apart at any time, and that she could be put to work in dangerous places and for abusive people. But north of the Mason-Dixon line, slavery was illegal. If she could run away and make it north without being caught or killed, she’d be free. Facing enormous dan ...more
Hardcover, 128 pages
Published April 21st 2015 by Harry N. Abrams (first published March 31st 2015)
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 ·  3,031 ratings  ·  410 reviews

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Best Harriet Tubman bio I've ever read. With every new Hazardous Tale, I notice something else that Nathan does really well. In the WWI book, it was graphic presentation of complicated information. In this one, it's the reactions of the narrators, and the way that those reactions validate the reader. Often when reading history, you can get a little confused by context. "Whoa!" you might think, reading about John Brown's massacre. "Well, maybe it was pretty common for people to get hacked to deat ...more
This is a fantastic story about Harriet Tubman. I thought I knew about her life and I really didn't. Why isn't there a movie about this amazing story. It's ripe for the Hollywood treatment - it has everything.

This book keeps the serious subject light and gives you an overview of this woman. I didn't know she meet Frederick Douglas. She was in the Civil War. I didn't know this. She went by many names, but her given name is Araminta Ross. I need to do some deeper study into this because she is fan
Quinn Rollins
It's great when book series I love are doing well. Well enough that the series continues. That doesn't always happen, which makes me hesitate to put all my lovin' into one particular franchise. Happily, one of the current hits among history-based-graphic-novels-for-middle-grades is "Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales." The series is written by to-me local guy Nathan Hale, and he's finding a wider audience than you'd expect for such a narrow piece of the market. The audience is coming because the book ...more
Amy Holland
Feb 24, 2015 added it
Shelves: 2015, j-comics
"She drugs babies and pays people with underwear -- isn't she FANTASTIC!?"

Love this series! And I'm in love with Harriet Tubman after reading this book - her will to live and her courageousness were truly heroic. Some specific things I loved about this book:

-The mention of Rochester and Frederick Douglass! I need to read more about his life. I often stop by his grave when I walk at Mount Hope cemetery. Something that I learned through additional Wikipedia research - the house where he lived in R
Liz Goodwin
Feb 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
With all their magic wonderlands and scary dystopias and Minecraft - uh - places, I sometimes despair that my kids will ever be interested in actual History. So I'm a little obsessed with Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales, a series of graphic books that are perfect for graduates of the Magic Treehouse. Instead of time-traveling tots, we have Nathan Hale stalling for time on the gallows by regaling a British officer and a Ninja Turtlesque hangman with stories from his encyclopedic knowledge of histor ...more
Jun 30, 2017 rated it really liked it

This was one of those books that I absolutely loved. I enjoyed the format a lot but it was the amount of knowledge I gained about Harriet Tubman that really increases my enjoyment of this book. Harriet Tubman is easily one of the most amazing people in history!! I highly encourage people who don't know her story to pick up a title like this one to learn about this amazing figure.
Dov Zeller
Writer and illustrator Nathan Hale has a vision, a passion and a talent for making historical narratives accessible and entertaining. "The Underground Abductor", a graphic biography of Harriet Tubman, is a book both kids and adults can enjoy and learn from. The premise of the Hazardous Tales series is that Nathan Hale of Revolutionary War fame, is about to be executed and is delaying the execution by telling stories (he can see all of time, or something like that) to his executioners (a kind of ...more
Kellee Moye
Full review at:

I love this entire series! Nathan Hale has taken history and made it accessible (with a dash of humor!). If you don’t the concept of the series, it revolves around Nathan Hale the Revolutionary War spy who, in the first book, was eaten by a history book so now knows all that has happened in history and is sharing it with the hangman and British officer who are guarding him before he is executed. The first book is Hale’s own story and then e
This is the fifth book in the well-researched graphic novel series by Nathan Hale. This time the focus is on the life of Harriet Tubman and her work as an abductor for the underground railroad. Hale does not soft pedal Tubman's biography or the ill treatment of the slaves; he tells the story in a straightforward objective manner with only the Hangman providing commentary and some (rather dark) comic relief. But this book is much more than a biography about Tubman, it is also a description of sla ...more
Oct 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-star
True, totally crazy story.


The kids are fighting over who gets to read it next.
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I like books by Nathan Hale. He gives information in a different stye than most people do.
Aug 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The Underground Abductor
By-Fahrudin Alic
Author-Nathan Hales
Genre-Graphic Novel

I read the book called The Underground Abductor and it is about a famous person named Harriet Tubman. At the beginning of the story, Araminta was a small child who was six years old and already had a job as a slave. When she had a job to complete, she could never do it. She would always get punished for doing these things and she did not like it at all. When she was still young, a man threw a bottle of lead straigh
Joseph R.
Oct 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
In this volume, the British officer supervising Nathan Hale's execution demands a story where America doesn't look so good. Hale tells a tale from the days of slavery, specifically about Harriet Tubman. She was one of the most successful abductors on the Underground Railroad, a system that smuggled slaves out of southern states before the American Civil War (and a bit during the war). The slaves went as far as Canada to ensure their freedom.

This story starts with her as a child. She was born Ara
Apr 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015
Nathan Hale is back—still on the gallows and procrastinating his hanging by entertaining his executioners with tales from American history. This time he teaches about Harriet Tubman.

This is an impressive addition to the series. Tubman generally merits a paragraph in history textbooks, if even that, though most people will recognize her name and connect her to the Underground Railroad. Yet the awesomeness of this woman goes largely untold.

Hale starts at the beginning, with the slave Araminta Ross
Aug 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
Underground Abductor is a very well written and illustrated Graphic Novel telling the story of Harriet Tubman. The illustrations are clear so that it is easy to tell each character apart from the others. I found the executioner and the British Officer added a level of humor to this story that I was not expecting. My only concern is that Harriet's story is being told my Nathan Hale (the spy) who was executed in 1776 - so it requires a suspension of belief that he would be telling a story about so ...more
Jun 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Excellent graphic novel bio of Harriet Tubman/Araminta Ross. I remember reading a lot about her as a kid, but not much since. I'd forgotten her brain damage, for example. Fabulously written and illustrated, as always, and I appreciate how it's age appropriate but doesn't shy away from the horrors.

Also, I tend to think of Millard Fillmore as one of the forgotten presidents, fairly neutral, but he should be pretty well villainized for signing the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 that not only penalized
Another great entry in the Nathan Hale series. This is only my second one (my first was the WWI book) but Nathan Hale does such a good job at presenting complicated situations (and very dark ones) with clarity and ease. We read Mud, Blood, Spies etc for a graphic novel book club that our branch does, and we'll probably do this one as well.

And if you're not sure if your little one should read it on the back there is a content warning on the back. I would say best for ages 8+, but it depends on t
May 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Nathan Hale (the illustrator, not the Revolutionary War spy) strikes again, this time with the tale of Harriet Tubman. With humor and style, Hale tells the tale of the famous Underground Railway guide, in a manner that's accessible to everyone from young readers up to adults. I thought I knew quite a bit about Tubman, but there was so much more to her story, and it is fascinating.

Love this series, so glad they're topping bestseller lists and winning awards, because they deserve them!
Erin Fowler
Dec 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Have you ever had questions about the underground railroad or wanted a better look into the life of Harriet Tubman? Well look no further because this is the book for you. In this unique graphic novel you will be transported to the time when slavery was popular. You will learn the history that brought freedom and abolished slavery. You will also learn about key people who helped change this world's story. Come along and learn history in an exciting way. Pick up this book today!
Jan 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This one was even better than the last I read in this series.

Harriet Tubman was a total badass. I actually learned much more about her from this graphic novel than I ever did while I was in school.

The content of this one was a bit less disturbing than Donner Dinner Party. Would be great supplemental reading for kids who are doing project for school, but would also just be good for those kids that like graphic novels and are looking for something other than Diary of a Wimpy Kid.
Usually, when an author writes series, the quality weakens. Not this series. Every title is absolutely terrific. Kids will love the history-as-story, the illustrations and the characters. The story of Harriet Tubman is presented in a way that is historically accurate, doesn't soften the grimmer aspects of slavery and yet is accessible to kids.
Rachel Placchetti
Jan 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kidlit
One of my favorites of the Nathan Hale series. Quick pacing, fascinating characters, engaging storytelling. My one tiny quibble is that this volume doesn't quite explain the Nathan Hale conceit as well as others in series, but I think kids will still catch on quickly and that this title can stand alone.
Feb 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: middle grade readers
Book five in the NHHT graphic novel series. Great story about Harriet Tubman.

interesting quotes:

"Where there are humans, there will always be suffering." (p. 5)

"It just goes to show: you can be a great historical hero, and your mom will probably still yell at you." (p. 106)
Priscilla Moreno
Mar 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Incredibly entertaining and interesting graphic novel on Harriet Tubman's life. Even though this is a children's book, it kept adult me entertained. I'm ashamed to say that I learned so much about slavery and the underground railroad from this kids' book. Can't wait to read the rest of this series.
Oct 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A fantastic graphic novel of a fantastic series. This has to my favorite one out of all of them. It tell of the tale of Harriet Tubman and her life from slave to a free woman and to a mark of American slavery. Read this spectacular book to discover things about Harriet Tubman you may have no know, oh, and don't call Frederick Douglass tiny.
Monica Edinger
Feb 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Excellent. What holds me back from five stars is my personal wee discomfort with the occasionally lighthearted commentary from the hangman. I totally get that he is sort of a stand-in for the child readers and could easily be talked out of it. Otherwise it is outstanding.
May 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This graphic novel is done very well. I loved learning about Harriet Tubman's life and multiple journeys to help others obtain freedom from slavery. Another well done historical novel by Nathan Hale. (Popsugar Reading Challenge: a book about an interesting woman)
Cheno N.
May 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Tracy Holland
Jan 30, 2016 rated it it was ok
Lots of good historical information in a graphic novel, but very distracted by the three narrators that kept popping up to give opinions and "add background information."
May 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
Tubman was a BAD. ASS.
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Nathan Hale is the New York Times best-selling author/illustrator of the Hazardous Tales series, as well as many picture books including Yellowbelly and Plum go to School, the Twelve Bots of Christmas and The Devil You Know.

He is the illustrator of the Eisner-nominated graphic novel Rapunzel's Revenge and its sequel, Calamity Jack. He also illustrated Frankenstein: A Monstrous Parody, The Dinosaur

Other books in the series

Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales (10 books)
  • One Dead Spy
  • Big Bad Ironclad!
  • Donner Dinner Party
  • Treaties, Trenches, Mud, and Blood
  • Alamo All-Stars
  • Raid of No Return
  • Lafayette!
  • Major Impossible
  • Blades of Freedom: a Louisiana Purchase Tale (Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales #10)

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