The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothinig, Traitor to the Nation: Volume II: The Kingdom on the Waves. M.T. Anderson. (Candlewick, 2008)
This concludes the 2-volume account of Octavian Nothing, a Black youth set at the time of the American Revolution. In Volume I: The Pox Party, Octavian is the subject of a radical scientific study to determine if the intellectual acumen of " Africans was equal to those of the European."
In Volume II, Octavian joins the royal Ethiopian Regiment, runaway slaves, hoping to win his freedom. But "we were discarded when we were no longer of use." The ending portrays great patriotism and the urgency for one's freedom.
Some characters are fabricated, but all events and settings are real regarding the Revolutionary War. The 18th century language is supreme and the author admits to speaking and writing in this vernacular all the time he was writing these books. Volume I won the National Book Award and a Printz Honor. Volume II won a Printz Honor.
Both volumes are 900-plus pages. With the technical language and intense story, this is recommended for mature readers.