Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Book #16: Chains

I picked this book up at a small independent bookseller on our winter trip to Red Wing. I knew I didn't have time to read it then, but I just couldn't resist. I actually went into the store three or four times before I just went ahead and bought the book, right before we left town. I started reading it right away, but other projects and responsibilities interfered.
I just finished it yesterday afternoon.

Chains, by Laurie Halse Anderson, is the story of a young slave girl, Isabel, who lives at the time of the Revoluationary War. Her mother has died; she has promised to care for her five-year-old sister; her owner's will stated that she be freed, but the lawyer and her owner's nephew ignore the will and go ahead and sell her anyway. Her new owners are British loyalists.

But she is drawn to the Patriot's cause, and their words about liberty. She yearns for freedom, for herself and for her sister.

This wonderful book is both a meditation on freedom and an exciting adventure story. The historical detail is fascinating; the story is compelling. Most of all, Isabel is courageous, thoughtful, intelligent. This book is heartbreaking.

Read it.

I know it's not Harry Potter, and it's not Twilight, but it does share one trait in common with those books (and I give you fair warning): there will be a sequel.

6 comments:

Songbird said...

Sounds great! For what age would you recommend this?

Diane said...

well, it's under "young adult" fiction, but I wouldn't give it to anyone under junior high age, more because of some of the themes than anything else.

Purple said...

You have piqued my interest.

doubtisgood said...

I haven't read the book, but I've been to the bookstore--"Best of Times". It is a great bookstore in a great town.

Barbara B. said...

Sounds great -- thanks!

Hot Cup Lutheran said...

sounds good...