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Hazel: A Novel Hardcover – November 10, 2009


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers; 1 edition (November 10, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 141692504X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416925040
  • Product Dimensions: 1.4 x 5.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,183,949 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 7–10—In 1913 London, Hazel Mull-Dare, 13, leads a sheltered life, attending the Kensington School for the Daughters of Gentlemen and being doted on by her overprotective father. Despite her mother's somewhat unusual, single-minded devotion to her work at the Battersea shelter for dogs, Hazel has a conventional and financially secure life. All of this changes when she and her father, enjoying an afternoon at the races, witness the horrifying sight of a suffragette flinging herself into the path of a horse to draw attention to her cause. An additional shock for Hazel is her father's "breakdown," which sends him to a rest home to recover while Hazel's family and friends protect her from the open secret that he attempted to hang himself. With some of these same friends, including a sophisticated, daring American classmate, Hazel helps stage a "suffrage action" at Madame Tussauds. The resulting uproar gets her into so much trouble that she is whisked away to her grandparents' Caribbean plantation, where she slowly learns of a long-concealed family secret. Despite a few scattered anachronistic expressions that jar readers right out of 1913 and into the 21st century, this novel has an absorbing plot and a strong female protagonist. Readers of Hearn's Ivy (S & S, 2008) will be happy to recognize Hazel's mother as the heroine, now grown up, of that book.—Ginny Gustin, Sonoma County Library System, Santa Rosa, CA
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Review

"Readers should simply give way to a good story expertly told from a writer who is herself happily unclassifiable." --The Independent

"The strength of this novel lies in its gently comic portrayal of characters seeking escape from the conventions and pretensions of prewar Kensington life. There's a rich vein of social and political material to be found here; readers will also appreciate the hint of irony to be found in the characters' self-absorbed responses to momentous historical events." --The Guardian --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Format: Hardcover
Hazel Louise Mull-Dare is nearly 13 years old on a June day in 1913 when she and her father attend a horse race near their London home, an event that will change her life forever --- in more ways than one. The crowd is distracted when a woman in a black coat dashes into the path of the horses and is kicked in the head, severely wounding her. As if this wasn't intriguing enough, immediately after the accident a man in the crowd attacks a female spectator. He shouts about "you and your lot," claiming that nothing positive can come from their cause. While Hazel's father is preoccupied and refuses to discuss the wounded woman, Hazel is resourceful. Sneaking into her father's den to read the newspaper, she discovers that the lady is a suffragist. Hazel vaguely knows that suffragists are women who demand the right to vote. Now she is fascinated.

In her cosseted, luxurious, sheltered life, Hazel feels that she is at a crossroads. She is bored with her many expensive toys; the only one she still plays with is a rocking horse, on which she gallops while imagining a wild ride into exotic lands. But how can she change her life? It feels like an impossibility.

As Hazel's claustrophobic existence continues, it is lightened only by her fun-loving and affectionate father. Hazel's mother has always been on the eccentric side. She adores her house-soiling pet dogs and spends her time working at an animal shelter (readers who enjoyed Julie Hearn's previous novel, IVY, are likely to be astonished and pleased when they realize the identity of Hazel's mother).

At Hazel's school, the exclusive Kensington School for the Daughters of Gentlemen, Hazel is intrigued by a new student named Gloria.
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By FairyQueen0316 VINE VOICE on September 3, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Hazel is a good coming-of-age-story. Hazel grows up, seemingly sheltered in 1913 London, England. However, it is quickly apparent that Hazel has inherited her mother Ivy's spirit ("Ivy" is the previous book by Hearn) and intelligence.

After witnessing the tragic protest of Emily Wilding Davison for woman's suffrage, Hazel is forever changed, even if she doesn't realize it. This event shapes Hazel's life in ways she never imagined. Hazel refuses to lie for a girl at school and ends up becoming an object of the girl's revenge. As a result, Hazel gets sent to the Caribbean where her grandparents have a sugar cane plantation. Hazel's eyes are opened to the way of life as she learns several secrets about her own family.

There are many other events that take place in the book that help make it a good read, but I don't want to give too much away. I loved "Ivy" and thought Hearn did a great job in creating Ivy's daughter. Personally, I didn't think "Hazel" was as engaging a read as "Ivy", but I am very glad I gave the book a try.

I look forward to reading Hearn's next novel.
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