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It's 1776, and the Revolutionary War is raging. Fourteen-year-old Nathan Wade is a patriot, but he's too young to join the fight. Then his cousin David Bushnell comes to town with a secret. David has designed a water machine that can explode bombs underwater. And his mission is to launch it against the British warships in New York harbor. Nate reluctantly agrees to help David build the weapon of war -- dubbed the American Turtle. Although he's terrified of water and worried about getting caught, when unlikely circumstances put Nate at the center of the action, he must face the murky waters of his fears head-on. Based on actual historical events, this adventure story captures the drama of the first submarine used in naval warfare and the struggles of a teenager overcoming self-doubt.