Sixteen-year-old Sadie Rose hasn’t said a word in eleven years—ever since the day she was found lying in a snowbank during a howling storm. Like her voice, her memories of her mother and what happened that night were frozen.
Set during the roaring 1920s in the beautiful, wild area on Rainy Lake where Minnesota meets Canada, Frozen tells the remarkable story of Sadie Rose, whose mother died under strange circumstances the same night that Sadie Rose was found, unable to speak, in a snowbank. Sadie Rose doesn’t know her last name and has only fleeting memories of her mother—and the conflicting knowledge that her mother had worked in a brothel. Taken in as a foster child by a corrupt senator, Sadie Rose spends every summer along the shores of Rainy Lake, where her silence is both a prison and a sanctuary.
One day, Sadie Rose stumbles on a half dozen faded, scandalous photographs—pictures, she realizes, of her mother. They release a flood of puzzling memories, and these wisps of the past send her at last into the heart of her own life’s great mystery: who was her mother, and how did she die? Why did her mother work in a brothel—did she have a choice? What really happened that night when a five-year-old girl was found shivering in a snowbank, her voice and identity abruptly shattered?
Sadie Rose’s search for her personal truth is laid against a swirling historical drama—a time of prohibition and women winning the right to vote, political corruption, and a fevered fight over the area’s wilderness between a charismatic, unyielding, powerful industrialist and a quiet man battling to save the wide, wild forests and waters of northernmost Minnesota. Frozen is a suspenseful, moving testimonial to the haves and the have-nots, to the power of family and memory, and to the extraordinary strength of a young woman who has lost her voice in nearly every way—but is utterly determined to find it again.
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Mary Casanova is the author of thirty books, ranging from the picture book One-Dog Canoe to the historical fiction novel The Klipfish Code. Her awards include an American Library Association “Notable,” Aesop Accolades by the American Folklore Society, a Parent’s Choice Gold Award, a Booklist Editors’ Choice, and two Minnesota Book Awards. Much of her inspiration comes from where she lives on the Minnesota–Canadian border, and she loves to explore the northwoods with her husband, Charlie, and their two horses and three dogs.From School Library Journal:
Gr 7 Up-In Minnesota during the 1920s, when Prohibition was the law and women did not have the right to vote, Sadie Rose, now 16, was 5 years old when she was found in a snowbank after the death of her mother and taken in by the Worthingtons. She has not spoken in 11 years. While they are away, Sadie Rose discovers some scandalous photographs of a woman whom she realizes is her mother. She begins to slowly remember bits and pieces of her past, and as she does she wants to know more about the woman and how she died. Sadie's voice returns as she discovers more of her past. Her father, an environmental photographer, lost his life because of the photographs he took of shorelines before and after they were logged, but murder was never proven. His death led Sadie Rose's mother into prostitution. Politics play a role throughout the book as readers learn about power, corruption, class inequality, the environment, and the strength of family ties. There is a budding romance, and some very interesting twists and turns throughout the book. This book does a wonderful job of depicting the time period.-Jesse L. Ray, Seattle Public Library, WA α(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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