Tuesday, December 29, 2015

The Hired Girl

Joann's mother gave her a dream for her future: to go to school. However, when her mother dies, and she and her brothers are left to work for their father on the farm, it doesn't seem like Jo's dreams will ever be realized. 

Joann can't quite make herself give up on her dreams, and when her father burns her books one day, that's pretty much all it takes for her to run away and start her life over.

As a maid in a wealthy Jewish family, Joann is seeing a part of the world and a way of life entirely new to her.  Her remarks and thoughts are entertaining and innocent as she learns more about the Jewish culture and society's feelings and attitudes toward this group of people.

And, Joann is very lucky to be taken in by this family.  She still dreams of being more than just a hired girl, and her family is aware of these desires and able to help her achieve them.

The Hired Girl is long....I talked about this with other children's librarian friends ...and that alone may be somewhat overwhelming for the audience it is intended for. However, it is a fantastic historical fiction novel that gives a realistic glimpse into life in the early twentieth century and I am hoping that if tween readers give this book a chance, it will be as well loved by them as it is by me.


Anne Bennett said...

I felt the same way about the length. The first part was very good, the middle dragged, and the ending was OK. Honestly I am not sure about the fuss over this book. I guess some critics are finding the religion aspect troublesome...the judgement placed on Judaism as not the "correct" religion. I didn't catch that feeling.

Peaceful Reader said...

Groovy Girl got this for Christmas from my sister. I might steal it from her gift pile to read first. Happy Holidays to you!

Kay said...

I think I might have to read this book, especially since the father burns her books????? Thanks for putting it in my sights. :-)