This is an excellent historical fiction book based on actual events and people. It is the story of fourteen-year-old Joe and his newspaper. Joe decides to publish a weekly newspaper for his small Maine town. As Joe works to pay off his debts for the start-up costs of the paper, his helpers work to keep up with the breaking news from Charleston, SC, where the Confederates have captured Fort Sumter.
The author shows life in a small Maine town in the 1860s. Joe faces many challenges as a business owner and newspaperman. His family struggles after the death of his older brother the previous year. The story also follows Owen, a young African American and his family. In Maine, where the story takes place, slavery has been illegal for decades yet prejudices still exist. There's action and adventure, hope and sadness.
This is a fantastic story for anyone who imagines themselves as a writer someday, Joe is an inspiration. I enjoy historical fiction books and this one did not disappoint. I moved through the story pretty quickly. I especially like that the story is based on actual events. The characters are very believable and keep the reader interested in the story.