Siege: How General Washington Kicked the British
Out of Boston and Launched a Revolution
Candlewick Press 2018. Ages 10 and up.
Hardcover: 978-0-7636-8851-6 $17.99
It is the summer of 1775. The British occupy Boston and its busy harbor, holding residents captive. The threat of smallpox looms, and the town is cut off from supplies, even food. Congress appoints George Washington as commander of the American armed forces. He is sent to Cambridge to build an army out of a rag-tag collection of militiamen.
Since the Battle of Bunker Hill the “war” has been little more than a series of skirmishes, but Washington is in constant fear of attack. He wants to take the offensive, but is held back by his war council—until the situation changes.
Roxane Orgill uses verse to zoom in on the Siege of Boston that launched the war against the British. She gives voice not only to Washington, but to his wife, Martha, the slave William Lee, privates, a deserter, artillery chief Henry Knox, a boy servant, and townspeople caught in the crossfire. Back matter includes notes on sources, which include the commander’s General Orders and soldiers’ letters, a glossary, and a bibliography.
Book Extensions
Candlewick Press Teachers' Guide
Reviews
“Multiple perspectives give a solid overview of how the incipient Revolution would affect those involved and effectively portray Washington learning as he goes. An interesting take on an oft-told story and an especially fine choice for readers' theater in the classroom.” —Kirkus Reviews
Excerpt
George Washington
He stood
All six foot two inches of him
To receive the news
From the brigadier general
On the situation of powder:
(May it please Your Excellency)
There remains in store
But thirty-six barrels
Not three hundred and three
As believed previously
Almost enough for each man
To fire nine rounds
But not a speck
Left to charge
A single
Cannon. 
He stood
All six foot two inches
Knowing full well
The enemy had six rounds a man
He did not utter a word
For the next half hour.
Siege: How General Washington Kicked the British Out of Boston and Launched a Revolution. Text copyright © 2018 by Roxane Orgill. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA.
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