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Susan Tuttle

Will's Changing World

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Will McShane is an eleven-year-old boy living on a cotton farm with his father near Charleston, South Carolina, just before the election of 1860.

Eager to learn, Will attends school where he discovers lots of new information and begins to question some attitudes and events occurring in Charleston.

When Will and his father visit his younger sister in the city, Will learns even more, particularly about what is happening in nearby Fort Sumter.

As tensions rise across the country after Abraham Lincoln is elected, the South secedes, and Charleston becomes a very different place. The garrison from Fort Moultrie seeks refuge at Fort Sumter, and the city prepares for conflict. With the nation in turmoil, Will is torn about the ideas of secession, war, slavery, and prejudice against blacks.

Will’s interest grows even amidst changes in his own household. But the political situation is getting worse, and more trouble is brewing around the fort. Will his beloved Charleston ever be the same again?

Inspired by Johnny Tremain by Esther Hoskins Forbes, Will’s Changing World is based on actual events and incorporates real-life historical figures into a compelling fictional drama surrounding one of the most tumultuous periods in American history.

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