Cover image for Thomas
Pryor, Bonnie.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Morrow Junior Books, [1998]

Physical Description:
150 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm.
In the early years of the Revolutionary War, eleven-year-old Thomas and his family escape a bloody massacre at Wyoming Valley and endure innumerable hardships as they try to make their way to Philadelphia.
Reading Level:
690 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 4.8 4.0 40146.

Reading Counts RC 3-5 4.8 7 Quiz: 17635.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



When Thomas Bowden and his family settle in frontier Pennsylvania, the war for American independence seems far away. Then Thomas's father leaves to join General Washington's army of Tories -- Americans loyal to the British king -- is near.

Thomas stubbornly denies the rumors -- how could war come to their beautiful valley? But soon he and his mother, younger sister, and baby brother are forced to flee, first to the rebel Forty Fort, where Thomas and a friend embark on a daring escapade against the Tories, and then across the Pocono Mountains by foot in a desperate bid to escape the enemy army.

Based on actual events of the Revolutionary War, this American Adventure is a fast-paced page-turner with solid period detail, fascinating characters, and excitement on every page.


Author Notes

Bonnie Pryor was born in California and raised in Spokane, Washington. She has lived in Ohio with her husband Robert and six children for the last 30 years. She has written 32 books, both picture books and novels for elementary age children. Her books include mysteries, family stories and historical fiction. Many of the family stories are loosely based on true family incidents and she often use her own children as characters in her books.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4-6-This first installment in a new series tells the story of Thomas Bowden, a 10-year-old living in the wilderness of northeastern Pennsylvania during the Revolutionary War. His father has gone off to fight with General Washington, leaving the boy to look after his mother, sister, and baby brother. After the Tories burn their home, the Bowdens make their way to the Forty Fort for safety. There, Thomas and Eben, another young patriot, embark on a dangerous adventure to spy on the British. They are caught and eventually escape, but not in time to save their troops from ambush. After the battle, the Bowden family decides to try and reach Philadelphia; facing dangers from the war and from nature, they make their way across rugged mountains. The descriptions of snakes, bears, and other perils are vivid and readers will feel as though they are traveling alongside Thomas. The characters are solid, but really don't change much within the story. Pryor does a superb job of weaving real events into the narrative and includes brief historical notes at the back of the book. Kristiana Gregory's The Winter of Red Snow (Scholastic, 1996) is another fictionalized account of real incidents during the Revolutionary War, told through a young girl's diary. Libraries will want to have both books for a nice balance of viewpoints.-Linda L. Plevak, Alamo Area Library System, San Antonio, TX (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.