The Bandit of Ashley Downs – Dave & Neta Jackson (Trailblazer books)

**The way in which my reviews are structured is not yet finalized. If you have any ideas PLEAAAAAASSSSEEE tell me. I feel this format is copying Reveries Reviews and I want it to be different. Thanks so much for your help!**

Title: The Bandit of Ashley Downs (book 7/40)

Author/s: Dave & Neta Jackson

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

Series (if any): Trailblazer books (Thrilling adventure stories introducing young readers to Christian heroes of the past)

Genre: Christian historical adventure/real historical events

*note from authors*

George Müller founded an orphanage in Bristol, England, that at first cared for thirty children. By faith, and without going into debt or revealing financial needs to anyone but God, the orphanage grew until Müller had cared for more than ten thousand children during his lifetime.

The fictional character of Curly Roddy is based on a real boy – William Ready (who was not, however, a bandit). As the story states, William was brought to Ashley Downs in 1872 by James Walk, a city missionary connected with St. George’s Church on Bloomsbury Way in London.

All other characters are fictional, but each event at Ashley Downs involving prayer and faith is true.

Era: Late 1800’s

Setting: London, England & Bristol, England

Content: 0/5

Curly receives a beating from Spuds. No details. Curly’s memories of his violent Dad, no details. No kissing or romance. No language.

Age-range: 8-12 (but I would recommend it for readers who are older as well)

Overall rating: 5/5

Source: I actually have no idea. 😛 But you can get it of AMAZON KINDLE.

Introducing George Müller

By the time Curly Roddy was twelve years old, he’d already survived six years as a homeless orphan on the cruel streets of London in the 1870s. He slept in dustbins and ate orange peels when he could find them. Sometimes he earned a few coins by singing and doing acrobatics in pubs. He had perfected his skills at snatching purses and picking pockets.

But when Curly overheard that a church was raising £3,000 for an orphan house in Bristol, his scheme of an armed robbery promised to bring him enough money for a lifetime. Enlisting the help of a local thug and thief, Spud Baxter, a plan is soon put into place. With Spud’s pistol and brute force, the church’s treasure should easily be taken.

But the highway robbery brings Curly more trouble than he had bargained for. Is it scarier to be sent to the orphanage from which he stole the money than to be sent to prison? Will George Müller, the man in charge of the orphanage, make Curly into a slave to earn back at least a portion of the money? Or might they do something even worse?

Curly’s in for the biggest surprise of his young life!

An adventure story, ideal for readers 8-12 years of age.


Wow. Just wow. This book had adventure, thrill, christian values, and everything awesome mixed in. No moment was dull when I read this book. I loved how the book started of with adventure, with the MC, 12 year old Curly Roddy in danger. This series has always been a family favorite. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves christian historical adventure.


I believe characters play a big part in books, and these characters nailed it. I think Dave & Neta Jackson developed their characters very well. Curly is a boy who’s spent six years of his life living on the streets and some of it staying with a thug and thief, Spud Baxter. Curly is very adventurous and headstrong, at the same time caring. I loved his character so much. There was also Spud. He’s not a big time thief, until Curly drags him into a big theft. He has mood swings, but he’s a pretty decent guy. He was very well developed.


The dialogue and the description told us everything about Curly’s life, the way he lived, and where he lived. I had no trouble remembering it was in the 1800’s.

PLOT 5/5

I’m giving everything 5/5 here! The plot was full of twists and adventure. Never, ever a dull or unexciting moment. The plot flowed very well; I loved the idea of it all.


Seriously amazing! It described a lot; the action and adventure was so good. I LOVE THIS BOOK! The Bandit of Ashley Downs is a book I certainly will read over again. I actually have read many of the Trailblazer books more than once. I think this whole review pretty much covers all the other books in the series!

So go ahead and read this book! I promise, you won’t be wasting your time.

About the Author

Dave and Neta Jackson, husband and wife writing team, are the authors or coauthors of more than 120 books that have sold over 2.5 million copies. They are best known for the 40-volume Trailblazer Books series for young readers and the Hero Tales series for families. Adults love their Yada Yada Prayer Group series, House of Hope series, Harry Bentley series, and Windy City Neighbors series along with numerous nonfiction books. They make their home in the Chicago area. Find out more about them at



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4 thoughts on “The Bandit of Ashley Downs – Dave & Neta Jackson (Trailblazer books)

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