Title: Shanghaied to China
Author: Dave & Neta Jackson
Series: Trailblazer Books
Major Themes: Sailing, China, Hudson Taylor
Synopsis: Neil didn’t mean to go to China—and once he was there, how could he ever return to England?
We have finished another of the Trailblazer books! Dave & Neta Jackson have done a great job of bringing historical Christians to life for children. Shanghaied to China tells the story of Hudson Taylor’s voyage to China and his first few years there.
Neil Thompson was visiting his grandparents in Liverpool, and couldn’t wait for Grandfather to recover so he could take him to the docks. He slipped away and went on his own to see the ships. He soon regretted the decision—when he found himself onboard the Dumfries, headed for China against his will. Also on board was one lone passenger, Hudson Taylor. Neil became friends with him during the voyage.
After arrival in China, Neil was aghast to realize that if he stayed with the Dumfries he would not reach England for at least another year. After the 6-month voyage to China, the thought was too much to bear. He jumped ship to find one that would return him home sooner—and was blackballed so he couldn’t ever ship out of Shanghai again. Now what could he do? Would he ever find a way home again?
Shanghaied to China is an exciting, worthwhile story in its own right, as Neil learns what it means to trust God and what forgiveness is. It is also a good introduction to Hudson Taylor’s life. All the incidents involving Taylor in the story really happened, and they show what kind of a person he was.
Listening Level—Ages 5 – 8, 8 – 12, Family Friendly
Reading Independently—Ages 8 – 12