Betty Cavanna Kay Haugaard - Essay

Kay Haugaard

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Sarah Devotion Kent. What a wonderfully upright, colonial name. A farm girl of Concord during the Revolutionary War, Sarah has spunk and spirit so that you keep expecting her to have some goal in mind—something to worry about, feel about. No such luck. We learn more about James, the wounded British officer taken in by Sarah's family, than we do Sarah.

[Ruffles and Drums is a] loosely plotted tale about the Revolution in which everyone is amazingly reasonable, sweet and understanding, and nothing of significance hangs in the balance. (p. 80)

Kay Haugaard, in Journal of Reading (copyright 1976 by the International Reading Association, Inc.; reprinted by permission of Kay Haugaard and the International Reading Association), October, 1976.

A trip to Thailand with her glamorous photographer father, the attentions of a young hippie …, and the chance to solve a mystery at the behest of the king of Thailand himself, by discovering the missing emerald buddha hidden in a vat of whitewash…. Lisette's summer is chock full of excitement. But as Cavanna's notion of characterization is transparent [in the The Mystery of the Buddha] …, as her idea of romance is having a woman ostentatiously called Professor Goodfellow throughout relinquish her title for marriage and joint credit on Father's book; and as her villains can be spotted a mile away, the appointments evoke plastic and naugahyde instead of emerald and jade. Strictly a low budget package tour. (p. 1100)

Kirkus Reviews (copyright © 1976 The Kirkus Service, Inc.), October 1, 1976.