The Water Seeker
By Kimberly Willis Holt
Henry Holt and Company, 2010. 305 pp. Juvenile fiction.
The BEST J Fiction I've read this year! This is the story of Amos Kincaid. He's the son of Delilah, who died during childbirth, and Jake, a reluctant dowser. (dowser - a person who uses a diving rod to find underground water) Before Amos is born, his mother has a dream in which she sees him being passed along to different women while they all stand beside a river. In his young life, Amos is taken care of by several women, most of whom are good people. His adventures take him across the young United States to the Oregon Territory, just about the time it becomes a territory. In addition to Amos and his parents, The Water Seeker if full of interesting, endearing characters, all playing an important part in Amos' life. Some of these characters separately see an apparition, a wild, redheaded woman who always seems to be where Amos is. Some of them also notice the constant presence of birds, all different species, flying, flocking everywhere, that is, where Amos is. A great book, masterfully laid out by Holt, with the evidence of good, solid research on every page. A strong recommendation from me!