Welcome to the website for A Buss From Lafayette, my new historical novel for middle schoolers and young adults. A Buss from Lafayette is my first historical novel for young readers since The Riddle of Penncroft Farm!
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Here I am (in the hat) helping to lay a wreath on the Lafayette plaque on Boston Common, in commemoration of Lafayette Day. This is proclaimed by the governors of Massachusetts and New Hampshire on the anniversary of the great Revolutionary hero’s death, May 20, 1834.
A Buss from Lafayette recently earned the Bronze Medal in the Juvenile/ Young Adult Category of the 2017 eLit Awards program, a global awards program committed to illuminating and honoring the very best of English language digital publishing entertainment.
Literary Classics is pleased to announce that the book, A Buss from Lafayette, by Dorothea Jensen, has been selected to receive the Literary Classics Seal of Approval. The CLC Seal of Approval is a designation reserved for those books which uphold the rigorous criteria set forth by the Literary Classics review committee, a team comprised of individuals with backgrounds in publishing, editing, writing, illustration and graphic design.
Happy to announce that A Buss from Lafayette was recommended on http://Gratefulamericankids.com as one of the best history books for kids to read! (Note: my first historical novel for kids, The Riddle of Penncroft Farm, was recently added to this list as well.)
TWO NEW ADDITIONS!
I just posted a map showing the locations of events portrayed in A Buss from Lafayette, and an audio of me reading the opening of the story. Check them out here:
Classroom and Reading Guide:
A Buss from Lafayette will be released by BQB Publishing. Available Soon!
Written by Dorothea Jensen, M.A., and Sienna Larson, M.S., this guide will soon be for sale as a paperback book from Amazon. This guide includes: bulletin board ideas, vocabulary exercises, varied handouts, puzzles and games, reading comprehension quizzes, discussion questions, individual and class project suggestions, cross-curricular activities (language arts, reading, social studies, mathematics, health and safety, art, music, dance, drama) and suggestions for real and virtual “field trips.”
Topics covered include the American Revolution, Lafayette’s role in our fight for independence, Lafayette’s Farewell Tour in 1824-5, and everyday life and customs in rural America in the 1820s.
“This document is fantastic and any middle school teacher would love to use it while expanding on the many aspects of this fiction/non-fiction youth book.” – G. Glover, Middle School Teacher and Principal
“There is no more crucial time than now to teach our children about the history of their country. The need for teachers to find ways to make history interesting is crucial. A Buss from Lafayette will provide not only historic background of the revolutionary time. . .but also a story that all children can identify with. . . The teachers’ guide also gives many wonderful suggestions of how to integrate subjects with the historical content of this novel. . . [and] suggests questions that challenge higher level thinking. I highly recommend this for teachers in grades 5-8.” – Susan Elliott, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Quinnipiac University; Literacy and Curriculum Development.
A Buss from Lafayette Named One of the Top 10 Middle Grade Entries in the 2016 Booklife Prize in Fiction Competition!
“Jensen effortlessly weaves history together with the daily trials of a girl resenting her stepmother’s reminders to behave like a lady. Most schoolchildren know Lafayette’s role in the Revolutionary War only superficially, and Jensen makes him come alive in a way they will remember. Historical accuracy, character development, and engaging dialogue enliven this narrative and make it an enjoyable read.” -Booklife Prize in Fiction
The vivid descriptions of clothing, family relationships, period-specific customs, and daily routines create a charming picture of life in 1825. . .The characters retell stories of General Lafayette, General Washington, and others, providing readers with a thorough backdrop of history to accompany the book’s main story line about Clara. . .an enjoyable introduction to the post-Revolutionary War period in America, and provides a lovely story about family, determination, and how perspective can change everything. – The Children’s Book Review
“. . .an exquisitely detailed and beautifully penned historical fiction novel.. . .Kudos to Dorothea Jensen for a splendidly told tale. I highly recommend picking up a copy.” – Stacie, Goodreads Review
“In Jensen’s middle-grade novel, a young girl in New Hampshire meets the titular, illustrious French hero of the American Revolution during his commemorative trip through America. . . . Her brief encounter with him will forever change how she views herself. . .A winning historical tale that may appeal to young fans of the musical Hamilton.” -Kirkus Reviews
WATCH THE TRAILER
LEARN ABOUT THE BOOK
In June, 1825, spunky, somewhat rebellious Clara Hargraves (14) has a couple of big problems: her red hair makes her a target for teasing, and her stepmother (formerly her spinster aunt) keeps trying to make her act like a young lady. Clara’s small New Hampshire town is abuzz because Lafayette, hero of the American Revolution, is about to visit on his “Farewell Tour” of America. In one eventful week, Clara learns a lot about her family, herself, and, most of all, about Lafayette and his vital role in America’s fight for independence.
A Buss from Lafayette is set in the small New Hampshire town where Dorothea Jensen lives. Two things inspired her to write this story. First was learning that Lafayette passed right by her house during his 1824-5 “Triumphal Tour.” Another was meeting a woman whose ancestor received a kiss from Lafayette. That “buss,” passed down through generations, eventually came to Dorothea. This sparked her Interest in Lafayette’s contributions to our struggle for independence.
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Come see new Lafayette statue dedicated!
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COME TO ONE OF MY UPCOMING EVENTS
ENJOY MY HOMAGE TO HAMILTON THE MUSICAL.
READ DETAILED BACKGROUND INFORMATION ABOUT A BUSS FROM LAFAYETTE HERE.
DOWNLOAD A FREE READING GUIDE FOR CLASSROOM, READING GROUP, OR JUST YOUR OWN USE! CLICK HERE.
READ, LISTEN, OR WATCH HIGHLIGHTS OF RECENT EVENTS.
At Lafayette School in Everett, MA, with John Kelly, dressed as a French soldier at the time of the Revolution, and Alan Hoffman, President of the American Friends of Lafayette
.On June 21, I was interviewed by Kevin Avard for the Gate City Chronicles program in Nashua. You will find excerpts of this interview on the “Author Interviews/Articles/Q & A” tab here.
On Thursday, May 12, I went to Boston for a radio interview to talk about A Buss from Lafayette on the Citywide Blackout program, broadcast on WEMF. Citywide Blackout “spotlights the independent art scene of New England.” It was great fun talking about Buss with Citywide Blackout hosts, Max Bowen and Gina House. Listen to a podcast here.
On Saturday, June 18, I signed books at the Manchester Barnes and Noble Store, 1741 South Willow Street, Manchester, NH. This was a Book Fair fundraiser for the Manchester Library. I brought along my Fiddlers Two, Sienna and Sara Larson, to play music from A Buss from Lafayette and other tunes from that era. (Thanks, ladies!)Thanks to Nathan for inviting us to participate. Here’s the website: Manchester B&N.
Sara and Sienna fiddling away. On the right is the book poster, some review highlights, and some “artifacts” that play a role in A Buss from Lafayette, along with quotes from the story featuring these items.
Spotting my new book on the “New for Young Readers” shelf at the Manchester Barnes and Noble. Bliss!
On Sunday, June 12, after a wonderful weekend with the American Friends of Lafayette in Boston, I was at the Barnes & Noble store in Nashua, NH, from 3-5 p.m as part of the Teen Book Festival. It is located at 235 Daniel Webster Hwy Nashua, NH 03060 . Here is the store’s website: Nashua Barnes & Noble. Thanks to Janice Wiers for asking me to participate!
P.S. Both B & N stores still have copies of A Buss from Lafayette if you would like to purchase one. : )
BOOK LAUNCH PARTY
Thanks to all those who attended, and to everyone who helped me with this event.
Click here to see pictures and watch an audio/slideshow of Dorothea’s short presentation at the party.
A SMALL BRAGGING MATTER OR TWO
On April 26, A Buss from Lafayette was the Amazon #1 New Release in Teen and Young Adult 19th Century United States Historical Fiction, and the Amazon #3 New Release in Teen and Young Adult United States Colonial & Revolutionary Period Historical Fiction.
On February 8, A Buss from Lafayette was the Amazon #1 New Release in Teen and Young Adult United States Colonial & Revolutionary Period Historical Fiction.