Essie can tell from the moment she lays eyes on Harriet Abbott: this is a woman who has taken a wrong turn in life. Why else would an educated, well-dressed, clearly upper-crust girl end up in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory setting sleeves for six dollars a day? But Harriet isn’t the only one who is lost. Essie wanders between the opposing emotions of her love for the young would-be lawyer who lives next door and her hatred for her mother who seems determined to take away every bit of happiness that Essie hopes to find. As the unlikely friendship between Essie and Harriet grows, so does the weight of the question hanging between them: Who is lost? And who will be found?
This is a powerful novel about friendship, loss, and the resiliency of the human spirit, set against the backdrop of the teeming crowds and scrappy landscape of the Lower East Side of Manhattan in the early 1900s.
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Jacqueline Davies is the talented author of both novels and picture books. Jacqueline lives in Needham, Massachusetts, with her three children.From Booklist:
Essie lives a hardscrabble life with her widowed mother and younger siblings on the Lower East Side of Manhattan in the early 1900s. The grim specter of poverty always hovers, yet Essie’s spirit, her talent for creating beautiful hats, and her bountiful love for her little sister Zelda help to imbue their lives with joy and positive energy. As chapters alternate between earlier and later settings, we follow Essie to work at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory. The plot builds—and so does a gradual awareness of cracks in Essie’s grasp of reality. She is in denial about an accident that has taken Zelda’s life, and she pursues a friendship with the mysterious Harriet Abbott, who shows up to work at the Triangle but does not seem at all like a typical working girl. Davies weaves two historic events—the disappearance of a wealthy heiress escaping family scandal and the catastrophic Triangle Shirtwaist fire of 1911, graphically depicted—into a lively tale of striving, unspeakable loss, and an eventual life-affirming resolution. Grades 7-10. --Anne O'Malley
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Book Description Amazon Children's Publishing, 2009. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0761455353
Book Description Skyscape, 2009. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110761455353
Book Description Marshall Cavendish Corp/Ccb, 2009. Hardcover. Book Condition: Brand New. first edition edition. 242 pages. 8.40x5.70x1.20 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # 0761455353
Book Description Skyscape. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0761455353 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.0316323