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The Child of the Moat

Ian B. Stoughton Holborn

Book Overview: 

Ian Holborn (professor of archaeology and a writer) was on board the RMS Lusitania when it was torpedoed, and as it sank he rescued a 12 year old girl named Avis Dolphin. She later complained that books for girls were not very interesting, so he decided to write one for her "as thrilling as any book written for boys!" This book is dedicated to her.

From the Preface: This story is not written for grown-ups, and if they want to know why it begins with such a gruesome first chapter, let them ask the children. Children like the horrors first and the end all bright. Many grown-ups like the tragedy at the end. But perhaps the children are right and the grown-ups are standing on their heads.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Before starting Aline looked round everywhere cautiously and then called to Audry, who was watching on the other side, to have a long branch ready to hold out to them. When Audry had obtained the branch they entered the water. Although the pain was almost intolerable he had decided to put his injured arm on her shoulder and it answered beyond their expectations. He was a very strong swimmer and all that it was necessary for Aline to do was to give the slight help necessary to counteract the one-sided tendency and to improve the balance of the forward part of the body, which otherwise would greatly have reduced the speed. So well did they manage it that they even got across with some54 ten yards to spare, being still further helped by Audry’s branch.

They clambered up the bank, a task not easy of accomplishment, and took Ian Menstrie at once to the tree which was close by. Aline put on her clothes, taking the remains of her linen shift for bandages. Luckily . . . Read More

Community Reviews

So after watching a movie about the sinking of the Lusitania, I went down a rabbit hole that ended with reading this book. It is entertaining from an anthropological perspective, being written in 1916 and set in 1557. It's pretty awful by 2022 standards. lots of talk about the superiority of the "hi