Ellen Elizabeth Hawkins: Texas 1886 (American Diaries)

Duey, Kathleen

Published by Aladdin
ISBN 10: 0689814097 / ISBN 13: 9780689814099
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Synopsis: In Texas in 1886, Ellen finds her desire to be a cattle rancher discouraged by family members who do not think it a proper choice for a girl, but she proves her worth when drought threatens the ranch.

From School Library Journal:

Gr 4-7--Living on an isolated Texas cattle ranch, Ellen, 12, aspires to be a rancher in spite of the inappropriateness of the choice for a woman of her time, as well as her father's disapproval. Drought conditions in the summer of 1886 set the stage for Ellen to prove that she is, indeed, capable of the challenges and hardships of ranching. Duey constructs a taut adventure in which the girl must conceive of a way to rescue her grandfather, seriously injured in a fall from a windmill while her father is away; secure the windmill blade; and drive many thirsty cattle back into the pastures. Each of the rapid-fire decisions she makes weighs heavily on her conscience as she reflects on what her father would have done. Undaunted, Ellen proves her love for her grandfather and for their ranch, which are the driving factors in her grit and determination to persevere against almost overwhelming odds. The author uses many details in describing life on the ranch, including terms such as "riata" and "latigo"; but, more importantly, she relates Ellen's keen sense of animal behavior in working with the horses and cattle. This satisfying story about a resourceful heroine will work well for historical fiction units.

Sylvia V. Meisner, Allen Middle School, Greensboro, NC

Copyright 1997 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Title: Ellen Elizabeth Hawkins: Texas 1886 (...
Publisher: Aladdin
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Good

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