Thomas Paine and the Dangerous Word


By Sarah Jane Marsh

Illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham

Cover design or artwork by Edwin Fotheringham

Formats and Prices




$16.99 CAD



  1. ebook $12.99 $16.99 CAD
  2. Hardcover $19.99 $20.99 CAD

This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around May 4, 2018. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

“The mind once enlightened cannot again become dark.”

As an English corset-maker’s son, Thomas Paine was expected to spend his life sewing women’s underwear. But as a teenager, Thomas dared to change his destiny, enduring years of struggle until a meeting with Benjamin Franklin brought Thomas to America in 1774-and into the American Revolution.

Within fourteen months, Thomas would unleash the persuasive power of the written word in Common Sense-a brash wake-up call that rallied the American people to declare independence against the mightiest empire in the world.

This fascinating and extensively researched biography, based on numerous primary sources, will immerse readers in Thomas Paine’s inspiring journey of courage, failure, and resilience that led a penniless immigrant to change the world with his words.


  • "In her debut, Marsh does a fine job of mixing the personal and public elements of Paine's life; he comes across as not just a historical figure, but a fully realized fellow, with hopes and dreams, enthusiasms and disappointments."
    Ilene Cooper, Booklist (starred review)
  • "Marsh's clear prose style and short, declarative sentences allow readers to follow events easily-and even to slow down and think about them."
    Betty Carter, Horn Book

On Sale
May 4, 2018
Page Count
80 pages

Sarah Jane Marsh

About the Author

Sarah Jane Marsh is the author of Thomas Paine and the Dangerous Word, illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham. Sarah has taught American Revolution history in elementary and middle school . . . and is still learning. She loves to visit historical sites and museums around Boston and beyond. Sarah lives with her family outside of Seattle. Learn more at

Edwin Fotheringham grew up in Sydney, Australia, and attended the University of Washington School of Art in Seattle, where he currently lives. He began his career as an illustrator working on a variety of projects, from CD covers to Neiman Marcus print ads. Other clients include The New Yorker and The Wall Street Journal. Edwin has also illustrated a number of children’s books, including Thomas Paine and the Dangerous Word by Sarah Jane Marsh, Tony Baloney by Pam Muñoz Ryan, and What to Do About Alice? by Barbara Kerley, which received the Robert F. Sibert Honor. See more of his work online at

Learn more about this author