Tag archives for Great Depression
BOOK NAME: Of Mice and Men
AUTHOR: John Steinbeck
Of Mice and Men, written by John Steinbeck, is a story of friendship and hardship.
George and Lennie are two men who are best friends. Lennie, with a huge build, is not mentally sound and often acts like a little child. George, the exact opposite of Lennie, is short and straight to the point. Together they work on a ranch, hoping to gather enough money to buy their dream house – a small farm with rabbits, chickens, and alfalfa. However, Lennie, who is immature, often gets in trouble with Curley, the ranch boss’s son. As a true friend, George supports and cares for Lennie through all his hardships. However, one day Lennie takes things too far by accidentally strangling Curley’s newly-wed wife. How will George manage to help Lennie in this tragic incident?
Of Mice and Men is an amazing book for teens. It realistically portrays the two men’s friendship through good times and hard times and their everlasting support of each other until the very end. At times, the plot is dramatic and the story turns in ways I would never have expected. The unexpected ending mystified me and left me with mixed feelings. However, the author’s descriptions helped me clearly picture the plight of the ranch workers during the Great Depression.
BOOK NAME: R My Name is Rachel
AUTHOR: Patricia Reilly Giff
In 1936, the Depression affects almost everyone. This was a time when jobs were scarce and many people suddenly found themselves poor. Twelve-year-old Rachel and her family are no exception. Pop lost his job in the city and the bills are piling up at home. It seems like there is no longer a way for them to afford to keep their home. So, Pop finds out that a bank job is available out in the countryside and Rachel is scared of this change. The city is all she knows. Miss Mitzi, a neighbor and best friend of Rachel, would have to be left behind. Rachel sees Miss Mitizi as a kind of mother to her because her mother died when she was young. She secretly hopes that Ms. Mitzi will marry her father.
When she sees their new country home with the run down barn and half weather-proofed house, Rachel yearns for Ms. Mitzi to bring some new life to the land. But not everything is terrible as Rachel finds hidden treasures throughout the home. She loves the drawings hidden around and wonders who drew them. But things turn from bad to worse when Pop finds out that the job he was promised is not available and now they are stuck. Pop then finds a new government project to build a bridge. This is great news, but he would have to go away and leave his three children by themselves. Even though Rachel is only twelve years old, she is in charge of the family and feels like she has the weight of the world on her shoulders. It is even more desperate when she finds out her little sister lost the only money Pop left them.
What a story! This book is all about strength and finding beauty everywhere you look. I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the Great Depression or historical fiction. You will be amazed at how desperate situations sometimes bring out the strength in you.
BOOK NAME: Turtle in Paradise
AUTHOR: Jennifer L. Holm
Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer L. Holm is like a ship that sways with the idea of fitting in, sails far with adventure, topples with betrayal, and regains position after coping with loss.
Turtle is an 11 year old girl who lives in New Jersey with her mother during the Great Depression. Due to her mom’s housekeeping job for a lady who dislikes kids, strong and tough Turtle has to move to Florida to live with her cousins in the Key West. It is hard for Turtle to get accustomed to living with her rowdy cousins. Soon, she realizes how everyone in Key West is related to her in some way. She feels better, but she dearly misses her mother. Turtle joins her cousins in the mischievous activities they do. Together, they find Pirate Black Caesar’s treasure and split it among themselves. But after a disturbing event in the family, Turtle understands what her true treasure is.
I would definitely recommend this 2011 Newbery Honor book for all ages. The book has a simple, interesting plot that brings out customs of the Key West. In the book, Turtle is constantly comparing her life with that of movie star Shirley Temple and Little Orphan Annie, a comic character, both popular in the 1930s. Just like a turtle, the character Turtle has a hard shell due to the tough circumstances she has faced, but she soon realizes that she too has a soft inner self. I really enjoyed reading about the kids’ adventures, especially the treasure hunt.
Hi, book fans! For those of you who haven’t joined the DogEared book club (yet), we wanted to let you know what book we’re reading next so you can join in!
July’s book is Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer L. Holm. Click
here to visit the Book of the Month page and to learn more about this
We”ll be reading the first four chapters in the book for our meeting on Wednesday, July 7. See you there!