post written by Emma Filbrun
Title: Captain Garrison
Author: Katrina Hoover Lee
Major Themes: Nicholas Garrison, Moravians, Pennsylvania, New York, Sailing, Ships, Boats, Historical Fiction
Synopsis: When a profane sea captain falls desperately ill, and then remembers the Moravian missionaries he met as well as the Bible verses his mother taught him, what happens?
I have been following Katrina Hoover Lee’s blog for many years, enjoying the stories she tells about her life. For a year or two, I eagerly followed her tale of writing the story of Nicholas Garrison, looking forward to reading the book when it was finished. The week it published, she gave away one copy to someone who commented on her blog—and surprise of surprises, I won it! How exciting it was to get a copy of Captain Garrison in the mail a few weeks later. I soon began reading it aloud to my family, and although it has taken us many months, we very much enjoyed the journey through Nicholas’s life.
Nicholas was born on Staten Island, New York, in 1701. He went to sea when barely a teenager, soon after his mother died, and, though he had been taught the Bible, he found himself spiraling into a sinful lifestyle. Many adventures came his way while he was at sea—my boys really enjoyed hearing about some of the things that happened! After a number of years at sea, he settled down on Staten Island with a lovely wife, but within a few years he went back to sea, and deeper into sin.
On one of his voyages to the West Indies, Nicholas met a Moravian. When he became desperately ill, he remembered this man, and turned to God. His life was never the same again! More adventures followed (including capture by the Spanish several times!), but now his life was lived for God and for his Moravian brethren.
Katrina has done a wonderful job of taking the bare bones of Nicholas’s life story and turning them into a connected, engaging story of a man whose life did an about-face. We really enjoyed Captain Garrison, even though it took us so long to get through (evenings to read together are few and far between at times). This book will always hold a special place on our shelves, and I am happy to have it! Anyone who loves a good story about a real person, or who just likes historical fiction, should enjoy this.
WARNING: In chapter 20, a man is killed in a battle.
Read Aloud—Ages 8 – 12, 10 – 13, Family Read Alouds
Reading Independently—Ages 12 – 15, 15 and Above, Adults
Links to buy this book:
Keywords: Nicholas Garrison, Moravians, Pennsylvania, New York, Sailing, Ships, Boats, Family Read-Alouds, Christian Fiction, Historical Fiction, 18th Century History, Colonial Era (US History)