CRISPIN: The Cross of Lead

Crispin

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Author: Avi

2003 Newbery Medal Winner! At 13 and newly orphaned, Asta's Son, as he's been called all his life, has never known a proper name, a full stomach, or much happiness. But when he is accused of a burglary and murder he did not commit and labeled a “Wolf's Head” — meaning he can be killed on sight by anyone — he flees the village he's lived in his whole life, taking only two possessions: his newly revealed name of Crispin and his mother's cross of lead. Escaping through the English countryside, Crispin encounters a huge juggler named Bear who forces the boy to become his servant. But Bear is an odd master, for he has many secrets, teaches Crispin new skills, and encourages him to think for himself. When Bear's mysterious mission and the secrets of Crispin's past collide, it will take all the courage and ingenuity young Crispin can muster to save them both. Filled with breathtaking plot twists and vivid characters, this riveting novel, told in the first person by young Crispin and set in fourteenth century England, is a masterful tale. Ages 8-12. 297pp.