top of page
  • N. N. Light

New Release | Bandy by Craig R. Hipkins #yalit #yahistoricalfiction #histfic #historicalfiction #bookboost

Title: Bandy

Author: Craig R. Hipkins

Genre: YA Historical Fiction

Publisher: Hipkins Twins


Book Blurb:


1860 Virginia -Young, orphaned- Isaac's only friend is a pigeon named, Bandy. Then he meets a dying slave girl named Joy. Isaac helps Joy escape, but they are pursued by an evil slave master bent on revenge.


Isaac’s only friend is a passenger pigeon named Bandy. He deludes himself in believing the bird talks to him. Bullied, he is resigned to a life of being the misunderstood bookworm by neighboring boys until a disastrous fire kills his parents and little sisters, sparing only his younger brother, Thomas. He and Thomas are taken in by their Uncle Raymond, an abolitionist, who plans to send Isaac to Virginia to buy Joy, a young slave with debilitating health, from her slave owner, Wil Jericho. Shortly after arriving in Virginia, Isaac learns the ugly truth. The butler who accompanied him on the journey killed his uncle before leaving and plans to do the same to Isaac to steal Raymond’s estate.

Isaac, with Joy, escape into the backwoods of Virginia. Discovering passages of the Underground Railroad, stowing away in carriages, hiding in churches, and outwitting the mercenaries hired by Jericho, the two teens fight tooth and nail to make it to Boston before they’re caught. Will Joy be taken from this life by sickness before she’s found freedom? On their journey, they learn a lot about each other. Isaac promises to bring Joy to Bandy's pond, a heavenly place where peace and serenity reign.




“You talk to Bandy? And he talks back to you?” she asked, almost in a whisper, her mind a whirlwind of conflicting emotions.


Isaac nodded and lowered his head, embarrassed. “I…I told you that you wouldn’t believe me.”


Joy leaned closer to him, her eyes watering with tears.


“Well, you…you are wrong, Isaac. I do believe you. I…I want to go to this pond. It seems like it is a magical place! Will…will you take me there?”


The boy’s face brightened. “You want me to take you there? Really?”


“Yes, unless you don’t want me to go. I would understand. After all, it is your own personal spot,” she said in a low voice, and then added, “I…I had my own spot, also.”


He adjusted his position and sat cross- legged, folding his hands in front of him. “You do?”


“I did,” she replied. “But I will never see that place again.”


He was gazing at her with a look of attentiveness. “Tell me about your place. What’s it like?”


She folded her arms, and he could see a smirk forming on her face and then she burst out laughing.


“What? What’s so funny?”


She wagged her finger at him. “Now it’s your turn to promise me you won’t laugh.”


He threw his head back and chuckled. “I promise I won’t laugh,” he said with a

wide smile. “But I must say that it is quite hard not to when you are laughing.”


Joy gave him a playful tap on the arm. “That’s because laughter is contagious,” she said with a merry grin, showing her gleaming white teeth.


He scratched his ear and leaned forward. “Are you going to tell me or not?”


She nodded and suddenly became serious, almost meditative.


“Sometimes, I would go to this place… It was out in the pasture. I could still see the house, but it was far away. There is a spot where no grass grows. It…it is rather strange, a round spot about as big as the horse stable. Moses told me it was a faerie circle.”


Isaac was puzzled. “What’s a faerie circle?” “Moses said that faeries are little elves or

goblins and are associated with witches and the devil, but I don’t believe it. He warned me to stay away from the place, but I never saw bad things there—only good things.”


Isaac was mesmerized. “What kind of good things?”


“Well,” she continued. “When you told me about Bandy, I …I almost didn’t believe it. I thought that I was the only one—”


She broke off in mid-sentence as if she were reluctant to continue. But Isaac prodded her. “The only one that what?”


She leaned closer to him and responded in a voice so low she was almost whispering. “Isaac, I…I talk to the animals, too.”


Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub)







Author Biography:


Craig R. Hipkins grew up in Hubbardston Massachusetts. He is the author of medieval and gothic fiction. His novel Adalbert is the sequel to Astrolabe written by his late twin brother Jay S. Hipkins (1968-2018) Bandy is his 6th novel.


Social Media Links:


1 comentário

N. N. Light
N. N. Light
09 de jul.

Thank you, Craig, for sharing your wonderful book with our readers!

bottom of page