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Reviewed by Maria Victoria Beltran for Readers' Favorite
Bold Crossings by Lance Elliot Osborne is an engaging historical fiction novel set in 19th-century America. It is the story of Malcolm Hornsby and Wukubuu. The former is a 13-year-old boy who traveled from Mississippi to Texas at a time when friction between the American settlers and the Native Americans was at its peak, while the latter is a 13-year-old Penatuka girl, the fiercest of the Comanche bands, whose gift of healing makes her a natural leader of the tribe. Malcolm loves to read books and work with machines but he has to help and defend his family at their new settlement. Wukubuu, on the other hand, refuses to be a domesticated wife as she evolves into the tribe’s healer. Their paths eventually cross in this most challenging of times.
Lance Elliot Osborne’s Bold Crossings is a coming-of-age novel that is both entertaining and informative. Two young people coming from two completely different worlds narrate their stories alternately and the contrast becomes very conspicuous. Osborne’s descriptive style is evocative so that 1830s Texas literally comes alive. This is an emotionally charged novel as the plight of both the settlers and the natives unravel from the teenagers’ points of view, which makes the novel doubly mesmerizing. The characters in Bold Crossings are well developed and a lot of research has obviously been done for this book. With a sprinkling of Spanish, French, and Comanche words, it is very helpful that there is a Glossary of Translations at the end, and it adds to the authenticity of the story. Rich in historical facts and riveting, Bold Crossings is a sumptuous treat for history lovers and general readers alike.