Excerpt from Stowaway by Karen Hesse, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Stowaway

by Karen Hesse

Stowaway by Karen Hesse
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Aug 2000, 302 pages
    Paperback:
    Jun 2002, 320 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt

goes with the wind.

I asked Francis Haite as he coiled rigging nearby if I might come out soon. He swung his old head no.
I shall rot here. It smells as if I've already begun.

THURSDAY 8th [Off the Coast of Spain]
John Ramsay says, "We are pulling away from Cape Saint Vincent, lad, the last of Europe. And soon you shall come out."
It's difficult deciding what to do first. A wash -- what with the fleas and a coat of saltwater on my skin, I itch like mad -- or dinner. I think it shall be dinner.

FRIDAY 9th [Off the Coast, North Atlantic]
We are fairly flying over the sea.

SATURDAY 10th [Off the Coast, North Atlantic]
In the night I dreamed of the Butcher and woke with a start. My back burned, remembering the bite of his whip. Silently, I slipped out of the Pinnace and crept over to Goat. She nodded, looked me over with a single golden eye, and leaned her weight comfortingly against me.

SUNDAY 11th [Lat. 34°1' N, Long. 14°29' W]
John Charlton says, "Wait until we leave Madeira, Nick. Only that much longer."
I don't wish a quick end to our voyage. In fact, I'd like to go on a very long time. The men assure me we shall, as they did that first day I approached them in Deptford Yard. But how much longer can I last in hiding?

MONDAY 12th TO TUESDAY 13th [Isle of Madeira]
I've wondered how John Charlton knew so much about Captain. Well, it seems John is the Captain's own underservant and has sailed with him before. The bits he brings me to eat come from the Captain's own table.
John Charlton checked on me as he tended the livestock pens. "We're heading from here to Brasil, Nick. Then round Cape Horn to King George's Land. We've orders from the Lord High Admiral himself. We're to observe the Planet Venus whilst we're there. It's very important, this observation, Nick. Captain says it will tell us how far the Earth is from the Sun and help all men who go to sea ever after."
I only wanted a long voyage. I did not know I had stowed away on such an important one.

WEDNESDAY 14th [Isle of Madeira]
A terrible accident today. Captain moved Endeavour
to a new berth this morning. The anchor did not hold fast on the first attempt and required to be set again. It was brought up and hove out, but this time Mr. Weir, the Quartermaster, found his leg entangled in the anchor rope. In a heartbeat Mr. Weir was over the side along with the anchor. It was a desperate work to bring him back up. The men hove up the line with the greatest urgency. But despite their efforts they were too late. Mr. Weir was drowned.
I want only to sleep, but when I close my eyes, I see the Butcher at work on Mr. Weir.

Copyright © 2000 by Karen Hesse

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Hillbilly Elegy
    Hillbilly Elegy
    by J.D. Vance
    In this illuminating memoir, Vance recounts his trajectory from growing up a "hillbilly" in ...
  • Book Jacket: The Dark Flood Rises
    The Dark Flood Rises
    by Margaret Drabble
    Margaret Drabble, the award-winning novelist and literary critic who is approaching eighty and ...
  • Book Jacket: All Our Wrong Todays
    All Our Wrong Todays
    by Elan Mastai
    You need a great deal of time to read All Our Wrong Todays, but don't let that put you off. ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Atomic Weight of Love
by Elizabeth J. Church

In the spirit of The Aviator's Wife, this resonant debut spans from World War II through the Vietnam War.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Our Short History
    by Lauren Grodstein

    Lauren Grodstein breaks your heart, then miraculously pieces it back together so it's stronger, than before.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    Mercies in Disguise
    by Gina Kolata

    A story of hope, a family's genetic destiny, and the science that rescued them.
    Reader Reviews

Who Said...

It is among the commonplaces of education that we often first cut off the living root and then try to replace its ...

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

O My D B

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
Modal popup -