Saturday, March 28, 2009

Book Review: Abbie Against the Storm by Marcia K. Vaughan

Abbie Against the Storm
Abbie Against the Storm: The True Story of a Young Heroine and a Lighthouse
Author: Marcia K. Vaughan
Illustrator: Bill Farnsworth
Publisher: Beyond Words (1999)
Hardcover, 30 pages, $15.95
ISBN-10: 1582700079
ISBN-13: 978-1582700076

Based on the true story of lighthouse heroine Abbie Burgess, Abbie Against the Storm is an inspiring story of courage complimented by beautiful artwork.

When her family moves to Matinicus Rock Lighthouse in Maine, Abbie quickly becomes an invaluable assistant to her lighthouse keeper father. Abbie understands that keeping the beacon burning is a matter of life and death to sailors like her brother Ben.

When the supply ship does not arrive as scheduled, Abbie's father must head to the mainland for much-needed supplies and food for his family. He leaves Abbie in charge of the lights, knowing that she will be able to keep them burning in his absence.

As a violent storm threatens the area, Abbie's quick thinking and determination enable her to avert disaster. The young woman saves the family's hens just before the hen house is washed away. When the dangerous waves also claim the oil shed and fog bell, Abbie fears that the family's home will be destroyed next. After moving her family to the safety of the sturdy north tower, Abbie stays up all night to keep the lighthouse's beams shining through the storm.

The family's supply of food dwindles, and Abbie worries that her father may not return before the family starves. Despite the intense cold, hunger pangs, and an uncertain future, Abbie tirelessly tends the light until her father returns.

Farnsworth's vivid illustrations bring the daily duties of a 19th century lighthouse keeper to life. There is an especially striking illustration of Abbie polishing the lantern reflectors in the lighthouse tower.

Abbie Against the Storm is an excellent book for lighthouse enthusiasts of all ages.

Rating: 8/10.

Buy Abbie Against the Storm:
Indiebound | Powell's | Amazon


  1. wow! great review--the book sounds really interesting. i've also liked lighthouses--living along the coast in new jersey gives me opportunity to visit them often. thanks for introducing me to a book i hadn't heard of.

  2. Love lighthouse stories. I am sad we no longer have lighthouse keepers. Thank you for the recommendation.

  3. I would like to read this one. Very nice review. Thank you.

  4. Looks like a good book....liked your review! :-)