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Boston Jane: An Adventure

(Boston Jane #1)

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  3,749 ratings  ·  361 reviews
1855. The unknown wilds of the Pacific Northwest—a land not yet tamed, and certainly not fitting for a proper young lady! Yet that’s just where Miss Jane Peck finds herself. After a tumultuous childhood on the wrong side of Philadelphia high society, Jane is trying to put aside her reckless ways and be accepted as a proper young lady. And so when handsome William Baldt pro ...more
Hardcover, 247 pages
Published January 22nd 2010 by Random House Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2001)
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Jan 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I spent the past week of my life reading this historical fiction for 9-12 year olds out loud to my daughters. And, while my 7-year-old was waxing and waning in her interest and my almost 10-year-old was completely fascinated by the story, I was spending most of my time wondering. . . what in the hell is this OBSESSION in literature with plucky, vivacious redheads??

Now, if you are a redhead, please know. . . I am not anti-redheads. One of my very best friends is just about the most stunning woman
I loved historical fiction when I was younger. I've always read a lot, and I've always read a lot of different books. There are a couple of genres that I've never really been a fan of, but I've always been a non-discriminating reader. However. Historical fiction has always been an absolute favorite of mine. 9 times out of 10 as a kid, my nose was found in an American Girl book or a Dear America book. I hungrily read anything that could transport me to a time and place and situation other than my ...more
Apr 01, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Motherless Jane Peck ran wild until age eleven when, against her father's wishes, she decided to become a proper young lady at the urging of her father's apprentice, William. When William leaves for the wilds of the Northwest frontier, Jane is devastated. When, at age fifteen, Jane receives a letter from William proposing marriage, she is eager to accept, even though her father does not want her to. But Jane gets her way, and she sets sail from Philadelphia on a ship bound for Washington. But th ...more
Apr 12, 2010 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Melissa T
Fun, delightful book. Not one that was life-changing or inspiring, but a quick, amusing read.

I read a few reviews saying it was racist. Ridiculous! Obviously those readers didn't get a chance to finish. The main character starts out top the frontier with decided views on the "savages" were like, but in the end realizes that all of that was wrong.

At the beginning of the novel, she has decided to go to finishing school to become a lady. This conversation between her and the teacher on the first d
Mar 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a charming late middle-school/ early YA book. Jane's father, a surgeon, is raising her alone, and when she gets teased by neighborhood girls for her hoydenish ways, she works on becoming a lady. Some years later she travels to Oregon Territory to marry a fellow and has to adapt to the rough circumstances there. So her personal journey is from competence to incompetence (aka "being a lady") and back to competence. The historical details are interesting and convinced me the author did her res ...more
Jun 30, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
I tried very briefly. But. Look considering what the blurb on the back says I don't feel this is a spoiler at all. It makes NO SENSE. She's in friggen Philadelphia and she takes a ship. Daddy's all "OH CHOLERA IT'S TOO DANGEROUS" just so the author can put her on a ship. Because sailing Cape Horn was SO SAFE. What. How does that even make sense??? Plus overland would have taken half the time, thus less time for something bad to happen. Lazy lazy lazy illogical storytelling. On top of which did w ...more
While I do also like Jennifer L. Holm's "Our Only May Amelia", I have always preferred Miss Jane Peck's adventures. From the ridiculous (but based in historical fact) rules of Miss Hepplewhite, and the unfortunate morals of William Baldt, to the unconventional love of an unconventional father and the romanticized realism of Jesu Scudder, the story is insightful and entertaining.

As a young child I read historical fiction almost constantly, and this story has stayed with me because of its wonderfu
I picked up this book to read for my nook from my local library, when I wanted something quick & fast to read. I didn't realize it's young adults (and considered middle school at that, which I don't normally read too much of) so the book was a lighter than I had planned, but overall was a great read.

Poor Jane - she falls in love with a man vastly unsuited for her, and from almost the very beginning of the book does everything she can to make him love her even more. Very true for its age, thi
Jane Peck, has spent her whole teenhood trying to be the ideal lady. At 16, she leaves her comfortable Philadelphia life and travels to Washington Territory in order to marry a man she hasn't seen in three years. After a grueling voyage and the loss of her best friend, Jane arrives in Shoalwater bay and quickly finds that her years of etiquette lessons are no good. She tries to maintain her ladylike ways, but she must ask why she's following a set of rules that have no significance to frontier l ...more
Libby Ames
I was skeptical about this one, but was pleasantly surprised. It was one of those cases where I came home from the library with twelve books, because I couldn't decide what I really wanted to read. I continued to dither at home and Michael suggested I read them in alphabetical order. Boston Jane was the winner and, because I am dealing with a bad case of insomnia, I was up reading it for a good portion of the night. A four star book is one I can spend a sleepless night reading and not have adver ...more
May 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. I could hardly put it down! It reminded me, almost exactly, of True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, which I read recently. However, it had a bit more history because an important element to the plot was Native American relationships with the white men.
This story also contained a romantic plot, which was nice, but not the main draw for me. I particularly loved this story because of the message it sent about women. I was annoyed for half of the book because Jane was
Margaret Chind
Nov 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2nd-grade, gr-u, ar-8
The first book that I read that I really enjoyed as a youth was The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle by Avi. It was a girls adventure in being something other than what she was expected and surviving across the sea and into the wild lands of the new Americas. When I saw this cover with a girl and a ship I was excited! It is a youth book, but even in my 20's I enjoyed this book. A girl ripped from her normal European Society life and thrust into life on a ship and then in the new Americas, her ...more
Kathleen Vallejo
Mar 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
The whole time I was reading this book it seemed SO familiar to me...I couldn't tell if it was because I'd already read it or because so many of the plot points/twists were similar to ones in other books. By the end I was 95% sure it was because I'd read it before, but even then, I don't remember what happens in the next 2, so I guess I'll be reading those next as well lol. It was a good book though, so I don't mind if it's my 2nd time through. Jane was a fun, spunky character and I really enjoy ...more
Feb 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this series! I read Boston Jane to my students and the girls just absolutely loved it, the jury is still out on what the boys thought. It's a GREAT historical fiction piece with such a great LOVE STORY! I have been obsessed with the series and have stayed up late this week to finish all three books. It's a story of Jane who lives in Philadelphia and travels to the wild frontier of the Oregon Territory in search of a man. I loved the adventure and it really was a good page turner. The end ...more
Jun 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My favorite book of all time! I basically grew up with it. It was the first book I bought for myself and I've read it more times than I can count. The last time I read it was actually a couple of months ago.
I'll always love Boston Jane and I'll never stop loving Jennifer L. Holm for writing it and making it such a huge part of my life.

Jane and Jehu will be in my heart forever. And Handsome Jim, too. And all the others.
Apr 09, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, humor, romance
A girl who has spent her schooling learning all about proper manners heads west to meet her fiance. There she runs into the crudest of people and those manners that seemed so important weeks ago are useless as she is forced to get used to much more primitive conditions. Humor and a potential romance (but not with her fiance!)
KJ, Madame Librarian
I liked it! The messaging was not subtle. But it was not bad messaging. Men can't be trusted, some etiquette cannot be learned from a book, and when all else fails just butcher the whale.
Sep 11, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a quick young read. I think Adele will enjoy it someday.
Feb 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Learned a lot of interesting things, considering reading the next book in the series!
Oct 03, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2017
The characters I liked the best kept getting killed off!

At first Jane annoyed the heck out of me, but she did grow and mature as the story progressed. I could not see the appeal of William at all. He was flighty and annoying and she barely knew him.

The story seemed vaguely familiar. I think I must have read it when I was younger and forgotten about it.
Dec 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
3.75 stars. I enjoyed traveling on the journey with Jane as she went from Philadelphia to Washington Territory. Clean read. No sex and very little swearing.
Jan 17, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I found Jane to be highly irritating throughout the book; her constant quest to be a lady in the midst of the wilderness was grating and her fixation on William was bizarre. However, she redeemed herself at the very end, so I'll give the next book a chance.
Sylvia McIvers
In 1846, the United States has never had a civil war, but it does have a Wild West.

Refined Philadelphia seems very far from the Wild West, but motherless Jane has no one to teach her manners. Her father is a surgeon who believes brains are meant to be used, and doesn’t teach his daughter to walk meekly, talk meekly, and especially not think meekly.

What an uncouth girl Jane is for her first decade!

When she is eleven, the snob down the block sends some verbal barbs deep into Jane’s skin, and she d
Feb 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I normally don't like most historical fiction aside from Regency, but Boston Jane is definitely one of my all-time favorites. In fact, I'd go so far as to proclaim it as one of the best pieces of historical fiction written by a modern author that I've ever read.

The book is about tomboy-turned-proper-young-lady Miss Jane Peck, who leaves civilized Philadelphian society to marry one of her father's former pupils out in the wild Washington territory. After a miserable voyage, however, Jane is horri
Decent book, but it felt unfinished at the end. The writing was clear, simple, and easy to read. Pleasant little story, but I wouldn't reread it. This is - apparently - the first of a series. Perhaps that's why it feels unfinished.
Oct 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-reviews
This book is intended for people interested in Young Adult novels. The main point in this story was that Jane was always trying to be a proper lady to impress William her fiancé. The book at the beginning of the story took place in Philadelphia, then on a boat called "The Lady Luck" and then on the frontier.

The main character in this book is very clearly Jane and the antagonist is her fiancé William. Even though William isn't necessarily the "bad guy" so to say but he is always causing trouble
Aug 08, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a book I should have read when I was 12--in fact, this was exactly the sort of book that I was reading about that age anyhow. In fact, it's highly probably that I did read this around that age and have since forgotten about it. Growing up, almost everything we had in our house was historical fiction (perks of homeschooling), but it's been years since I've read any. I can't exactly say what inspired me to order this from the library, and I probably wouldn't have read it at all, except th ...more
Mar 22, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reviewed for

Boston Jane: An Adventure is the first book in an excellent three-part series. Teenage Jane longs to be prim and proper, but she doesn’t know the slightest thing about being a lady. After some humorous lessons at one of the finest finishing schools in Philadelphia, Jane excitedly sets out to prove she’s grown-up. Along her journey she finds much more than she bargained for, including adventure, mystery and romance.

Newbery Honor-winning author Holm once agai

I don't read middle school books that often. Even when I was in middle school, I was more into the mature YA. I don't know why, it just always seemed like the plot was watered down, and they seem toi afraid to be different. I mean, there's hardly ever any homosexual characters (Harry Pitter being the exception.)

Which brings up the question, why not? Kids shouldknow about gay people. With this sheltering, they aren't going to be the accepting people we (should) want them to be. It also does
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Jennifer L. Holm is a NEW YORK TIMES bestselling children's author and the recipient of three Newbery Honors for her novels OUR ONLY MAY AMELIA, PENNY FROM HEAVEN, and TURTLE IN PARADISE.

Jennifer collaborates with her brother, Matthew Holm, on two graphic novel series -- the Eisner Award-winning Babymouse series and the bestselling Squish series. She is also the author of several other highly pra

Other books in the series

Boston Jane (3 books)
  • Wilderness Days (Boston Jane, #2)
  • The Claim (Boston Jane, #3)
“Miss Hepplewhite looked pained.

"Miss Peck," she said at last, "a young lady should never, ever, under any circumstances whatsoever, run. Should you find yourself in a situation where you are at risk, it is always preferable to faint.”
“Like me!" I said. "I have to work hard, too. Why, I haven't thrown manure in over two months!” 9 likes
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