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published: Jul 2012
pages: 288
ISBN:9781554514946
publisher: Annick Press

The Lynching of Louie Sam

by Elizabeth Stewart

tagged: prejudice & racism
0 of 5
0 ratings
rated!
rated!
list price: $1.99
edition:eBook
also available: Hardcover Paperback
published: Jul 2012
pages: 288
ISBN:9781554514946
publisher: Annick Press
Description

Between 1882 and 1968 there were 4,742 lynchings in the United States. In Canada during the same period there was one—the hanging of American Indian Louie Sam.

The year is 1884, and 15-year-old George Gillies lives in the Washington Territory, near the border with British Columbia. In this newly settled land, white immigrants have an uneasy relationship with the Native Indians. When George and his siblings discover the murdered body of a local white man, suspicion immediately falls on a young Indian named Louie Sam. George and his best friend, Pete, follow a lynch mob north into Canada, where the terrified boy is seized and hung.

But even before the deed is done, George begins to have doubts. Louie Sam was a boy, only 14—could he really be a vicious murderer? Were the mob leaders motivated by justice, or were they hiding their own guilt? As George uncovers the truth—implicating Pete’s father and other prominent locals—tensions in the town rise, and he must face his own part in the tragedy. But standing up for justice has devastating consequences for George and his family.

Inspired by the true story of the lynching, recently acknowledged as a historical injustice by Washington State, this powerful novel offers a stark depiction of historical racism and the harshness of settler life. The story will provoke readers to reflect on the dangers of mob mentality and the importance of speaking up for what’s right.

About the Author
Elizabeth Stewart is a freelance writer and editor for film, television, and the Internet. This is her first novel. She lives in Vancouver, British Columbia.
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Recommended Age and Grade
Age:
17 to 18
Grade:
12
Editorial Review

“The plot moves quickly and should interest many readers, even those not usually drawn to historical fiction.”

— School Library Journal, 09/12