Max is horrified when he sees Sam Black, a new neighbor, strike a boy who is in his charge, but Max still shouts, "Thief," and tries to catch the boy when he sees him steal from the General Store in The Landings. When the abused boy runs away and takes refuge in Maxís secret fort in the woods, Max must decide where his loyalties lie.
"The characters shine and Leroy's inner-voice (from which the book takes its narrative style) shows an active and practical mind. Humour also plays a strong role in keeping this tale light and alive. The Epilogue and Author's note detail the historical background and personal impetus for this adventure tale. Some of the characters existed in real life. This book is wonderful though for those students who enjoy an adventure in time and in spirit."
"Huser has created a fast-paced, enjoyable story, the setting of which gives an organic history lesson about the Chautauqua Shows, a movement that spanned the 1880s to the 1920s...Huser has a flair for 1920s lingo and for painting minor characters with a few well-chosen observations."