I liked this story. Philbrick has some real talent.
Homer is a fun character to follow with a very unique voice, and his journey to find and save his brother from the war is full of surprises. Set in the time of the Civil War, there are a few racial slurs in this book, and although the "n-word" is never used, this might be something parents want to discuss with their children. Over the course of the book, Homer sees and learns things that change him from a boy to a young man, and the change is a fascinating thing to watch.
If you like adventure, this is an excellent book to try.
Estimated Reading Level: 5th grade +