Book Talk: The Hired Girl by Laura Amy Schlitz

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Watch the book talk video here, or read it below:
Can a tough farm girl realize her dreams of refinement? Joan is fourteen and she’s not allowed to go to school anymore, because she has to do the drudge work on the family farm. She writes in her diary and reads in order to better herself, but when even her novels are taken from her, she runs away. She is lucky enough to find work in a modern household in Baltimore, working for a Jewish family that owns a department store. She is in love with the books in the family’s library, especially a big book of art, and she is a little smitten by some of the family members, too. But can Joan keep her job long enough to save up for her dreams, or will her flights of fancy and her well-meant attempts to meddle in the family’s lives be too much? Read the Hired Girl to find out.

Read a sample chapter.

Book details: Schlitz, L. A. (2015). The Hired Girl. Somerville, MA: Candlewick. ISBN 9780763678180; hardcover; $17.99.

Annotation: A farm girl’s eyes are opened to the wider world when she becomes a servant for a Jewish family in Baltimore.


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  • ALSC Notables List: Middle Grade Category
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