Tag Archives: Lost Colony

Lisa Klein. Cate of the Lost Colony. New York: Bloomsbury, 2010.

The death of Catherine Archer’s father in 1583 prompts Queen Elizabeth to invite her to Whitehall to be one of her maids of honor. While in London, Catherine (nicknamed Cat by the Queen) meets Sir Walter Ralegh and becomes enchanted by him. The two secretly begin writing poems of love to each other, and Catherine dreams of joining him in the New World.

However, Catherine and Ralegh’s clandestine relationship comes to a quick end when the queen finds the letters and abruptly sends Catherine to the Tower of London as punishment for her betrayal. Later, thinking that she has found an even stiffer penalty, Queen Elizabeth orders her prisoner to the Virginia settlement. Although the queen believes this to be a hard sentence, Catherine is excited to see America – even if she is without Ralegh.

After enduring months at sea, Cate (as she likes to be called now) and the rest of the Roanoke Island settlers arrive in the New World. Unfortunately, relations between the English and the Native Americans are tense. Conditions are not what were expected, and the expedition leaders return to London for aid, promising to return quickly. Cate works with Manteo, the Croatan translator, in trying to mediate between the two groups. Manteo and Cate feel a mutual understanding, and a trusting relationship develops between them.  Although the English fight in the beginning, they soon realize that while they wait for rescue they must live peacefully among the Croatans to survive.

Three years after Cate and her fellow settlers arrived on Roanoke Island, an English ship carrying their rescuers arrive. However, they are happy living among the Croatans and refuse to return to England. Although their rescuers, including Sir Walter Ralegh, do not understand why they are determined to stay, they depart without them. It is agreed that the Englishmen will not speak of their interaction with the settlers, simply saying that they were not found and their fate is a mystery.

This story is recounted through the perspectives of Catherine Archer, Sir Walter Ralegh, and Manteo. Lisa Klein provides an interesting ending to the tale of the Lost Colony.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

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Filed under 2010, 2010-2019, Children & Young Adults, Coast, Dare, Historical, Klein, Lisa

Margaret Lawrence. Roanoke. New York: Delacorte Press, 2009.

Gabriel North, a young man employed by Lord Burghley, is known to have a way with women. In an attempt to avoid war with the Native Americans at Roanoke, Burghley sends North there to seduce the Secota princess, Naia.  The English are convinced that the tribe controls gold mines and pearls beds, and they want those resources for themselves. North goes with Ralph Lane’s 1585 expedition, but the results are not what North’s handlers wanted.  In an attempt to make things right, North returns with John White’s colonizing expedition in 1587. The story is narrated by Robert Mowbray, another one of Burghley’s spies, and the action moves back and forth between America and England.  The mixed intentions, misunderstandings, physical deprivations, cruelty, and bad luck that attended the English on Roanoke are well portrayed, along with betrayals on both sides of the Atlantic.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

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Filed under 2000-2009, 2009, Coast, Dare, Historical, Lawrence, Margaret

James Pendleton. Drinkwater’s Folly. Raleigh, NC: Ivy House Publishing Group, 2007.

In the summer of 1966 Patricia Randal flees an abusive marriage and returns to Roanoke Island.  There she works as a journalist and gets to know a wide rage of folks–longtime residents, fishermen, summer people, cast members of The Lost Colony.  Unfortunately, 1966 is no summer of love for the Outer Banks.  A police officer preys on women driving late at night, racial tensions are increasing, and the conflicts between year-round residents and summer people seem sharper than in years past.  When the son of a local family is killed in Vietnam, protests reflecting unhappiness with the war and the racial status quo unsettle the locals.  Patricia’s decision to share her house with Karen Godwin, the daughter of a United States senator, exposes them both to new temptations and dangers. By the summer’s end, Patricia will come to terms with her past and set herself on the road to a full life, but for others the summer will bring only heartache and destruction.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.


Filed under 2000-2009, 2007, Coast, Dare, Pendleton, James, Piedmont

E.A.B.S. (E. A. B. Shackelford). Virginia Dare: A Romance of the Sixteenth Century. New York: Thomas Whittaker, 1892.

In this version of the Lost Colony story, most of the English settlers are killed, but Virginia Dare survives. In 1607, she goes north to Powhatan’s country, but the Jamestown settlers never learn of her existence. The remnants of Manteo’s tribe become Christians, and Virgina marries Manteo’s son Iosco.

Check this title’s availability and access an online copy through the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

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Filed under 1890-1899, 1892, Coast, Novels to Read Online, Religious/Inspirational, Shackelford, E. A. B.

William Farquhar Payson. John Vytal: A Tale of the Lost Colony. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1901.

This alternative telling of the Lost Colony story adds some new figures, including 16th century bad-boy dramatist Christopher Marlowe and the main character, Captain John Vytal. Spanish invaders, hostile Native Americans, and internal dissent doom the colony. Marlowe returns to England and meets his fate at that tavern in Deptford. White Doe (Virginia Dare), Dark Eyes (Manteo’s son) and Eleanor Dare flee to the forest, along with Vytal who has long pined for Eleanor.

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Filed under 1900-1909, 1901, Coast, Dare, Historical, Novels to Read Online, Payson, William Farquhar

Mary Virginia Wall. The Daughter of Virginia Dare. New York: Neale Publishing Co., 1908.

Virginia Dare is the lone survivor of the Lost Colony. Against her will, she becomes the consort of Powhatan and bears him a daughter, Pocahontas. After this interesting Tar Heel prelude, the novel relates the standard stories of Pocahontas, Jamestown, and John Smith.

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Filed under 1900-1909, 1908, Coast, Dare, Historical, Novels to Read Online, Wall, Mary Virginia

Deborah Homsher. The Rising Shore–Roanoke. Blue Hull Press, 2007.

The Rising Shore–Roanoke recounts the story of the Lost Colony from the perspective of two of its female members: Elenor White Dare, the daughter of expedition leader John White, and her servant Margaret Lawrence. Elenor longs to explore and paint pictures of Virginia, as her father has done, while Margaret seeks her own path to independence. Left out of the formal power structure due to their gender, these women are sometimes frustrated by circumstance and tradition, but they move boldly, struggling alongside the other settlers and facing adventures in the wilderness. Although the true fate of the colony remains unknown, Homsher puts forth one possibility in this historical novel.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC Library Catalog.

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Filed under 2000-2009, 2007, Coast, Dare, Historical, Homsher, Deborah