Johnny Tremain

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For the film based on the novel, see Johnny Tremain (film).
Johnny Tremain
Johnny Tremain cover).jpg
First edition (US)
Author Esther Forbes
Illustrator Lynd Ward
Country United States
Language English
Genre Historical novel
Publisher Houghton Mifflin (US)
Chatto & Windus (UK)
Publication date
1943 (US), 1944 (UK)
Media type Print (hardback & paperback)
ISBN 0-440-44250-8
OCLC 21002210
LC Class MLCS 2006/43879 (P)

Johnny Tremain is a 1943 children's fiction historical novel by Esther Forbes set in Boston prior to and during the outbreak of the American Revolution. Intended for teen-aged readers, the novel's themes include apprenticeship, courtship, sacrifice, human rights, and the growing tension between Patriots and Loyalists as conflict nears. Events described in the novel include the Boston Tea Party, the British blockade of the Port of Boston, the midnight ride of Paul Revere, and the Battles of Lexington and Concord.

The book won the 1944 Newbery Medal and is the 16th bestselling children's book as of the year 2000 in the United States, according to Publishers Weekly.[1] In 1957, Walt Disney Pictures released a film adaptation, also called Johnny Tremain.

Another Johnny Tremaine - note the different spelling of the surname - was a historical fictional character played by Rod Cameron in the 1949 Republic Pictures movie Brimestone, written by Thames Williamson and Norman S. Hall. This Johnny Tremaine was a U.S. Marshall who goes undercover to stop a cattle smuggling ring. This movie followed the awarding of the Newbery prize, but preceded the 1957 movie based on a Disneyfied version of Forbes's book.


Kirkus Reviews wrote, "This is delightful reading, but at the close it seems to leave less sense of substance and permanence than her best work (Paradise and Paul Revere), but to me it was more satisfying than The General's Lady or Mirror for Witches."[2] Common Sense Media said that "this sweeping tale of redcoats and revolutionaries has a lot to offer" and remarked, "Forbes, a historian, writes with detail and precision, imbuing historical events with life and passion that is often lacking in textbooks."[3]


  1. ^ Infoplease
  2. ^ "Johnny Tremain". Kirkus Media LLC. Retrieved 7 October 2015. 
  3. ^ "Johnny Tremain". Common Sense Media Inc. Retrieved 7 October 2015. 
Preceded by
Adam of the Road
Newbery Medal recipient
Succeeded by
Rabbit Hill