692763On my Sabbatical reading list are several children’s books. Most of these are because I teach Children’s lit once every few semesters. Others are there because I read whatever I possibly can if I think it will help my own writing. This book is the first in the American Girl series about Kit, a girl growing up during the depression. I wanted to see how the author handled a child in the context of financial struggles and a national crisis. It was a nice snapshot of life in the depression. I learned a couple things that I hadn’t realized started in the 1930s, in spite of how much research I’ve done about the era.

My novel, Slider’s Son is with my agent in New York. At this moment, it’s under consideration at Holiday House. I’d love for them to take it. It’s historical, too, and it’s set during the depression in North Dakota. Slider’s Son is a mystery/action story; the main character wants to be a major league baseball pitcher. He and his dad discover a dead body: murdered. That kicks off the action of the story.

I have been trying to immerse myself in stories of the late 1930s, the depression, and pre-WWII stories to be sure I convey the feeling of the time. This book didn’t exactly ignite my passion to read the entire series, but I’m glad I read it. Kit is a good character. I think I’ve read too much depression literature because lots of the idea/plot points seemed stereotypical. They probably aren’t. They’re probably just true to the depression, and truth about an era or region tends to be considered stereotypical after awhile. Anyway, if I had a little girl right now, I’d hand her the book.

Becky Avatar

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