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Hope Hardcover – October 30, 1995


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum; 1st edition (October 30, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689801289
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689801280
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 4.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,327,905 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This historical novel about a Shaker community in the mid-19th century is strong on ambience but short on plot and character development. Hope's mother has died and it's been more than a year since anyone has heard from her father, prospecting for gold out West. A callous uncle deposits Hope and her younger brother, John, with the Shakers, who welcome orphans and abandoned children. Gaeddert (Breaking Free) uses the children's reactions to dramatize the salient features of Shaker life. Hope, the main character, chafes at the strict rules and the strange customs, especially resenting the total separation of the sexes that prevents her from even talking with her brother. John, meanwhile, thrives on the Shakers' evident love and is thrilled to be taught woodworking. A year goes by-allowing Gaeddert to describe a full range of Shaker holidays-but neither Hope's nor John's feelings change. When they at last hear from their father (whose previous attempts to contact them, it emerges, were foiled by their uncle), Hope chooses to join him while John stays with the Shakers. Despite the author's attempts to turn the children's decisions into a climactic moment, there's never much tension, just finely wrought period details. Ages 8-12.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-8?Set in 1851, Hope is the story of two children placed in the care of a community of Shakers after their mother dies. Hope is headstrong and independent; her younger brother, John, is delicate and sensitive. Gaeddert vividly portrays the Shakers' peculiarities and kindness, leaving readers with a fully detailed and historically accurate picture. Rather than relying on descriptive narrative, she allows readers to meet them through the viewpoints of the two children, and succeeds in producing multiple dimensions and depths. Hope rebells against the Shaker sisters and strains at the discipline imposed upon her; John feels safe and cared for. Their father is panning for gold in California, and Hope is true to her name as she waits for him to come and "rescue" them. When word from him finally comes, she leaves; but John elects to remain behind, and by this time readers have witnessed enough growth in both characters to accept their choices as valid and right. Gaeddert successfully breaks through stereotypes to portray individuals living together in community. Direct youngsters wanting more information on Shaker life to Jane Yolen's Simple Gifts (Viking, 1976; o.p.); Nancy O'Keefe Bolick and Sallie G. Randolph's Shaker Inventions (Walker, 1990); or Raymond Bial's Shaker Home (Houghton, 1994).?Joyce Adams Burner, Hillcrest Library, Prairie Village, KS
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 8, 1998
Format: Paperback
12 year old Hope's father set off for California to find gold, and then their mother died. She and her younger brother and sister are on their own. Their uncle won't take care of them. He forces them to go live with the Shakers. Hope hates living with the Shakers. The Shakers won't allow brothers or sisters to see each other. Men and boys are separate from girls and women in everything. Will Hope's father ever return or will she have to stay in this awful place until she is an adult and the Shakers will allow her to leave on her own?
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on February 11, 2007
Format: Paperback
Hope is a girl who is strong physically and emotionally and wishes to be a doctor when she grows up. Her brother John is a quiet, respectful boy who looks up to Hope and trusts her to make decisions for him. Their mother died and they haven't seen their father in more than a year because he is searching for gold in California. They were living with their uncle's family until he had to send them to live with the Shakers. The Shakers are a group of religous people who believe that men and women shouldn't live together in the same building. Hope doesn't like the ways of the Shaker family and wishes she could escape from them and search for their father. John however likes living with the Shakers and hopes to stay with them for the rest of his life. Read the book to find out what happens in the end.

This book taught me that I should be grateful for what I have, especially my family . It showed me that there are people around the world who don't have families and there are families that have been seperated from each other. Now I know that whenever I am feeling jealous of somebody or if I want something I can't have, I can think of Hope and John and realize how lucky I really am. I really would recommened this book to anyone who likes historical fiction or anyone who is feeling that they don't have enough in life. This book taught me a really important lesson about life and I really enjoyed it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Lisha Gray on September 8, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed this book, i think i qould also have enjoyed finding out what happens to the heroine(Hope) in her travels with her father into the west, I also think i would like to read a book that tells us of her brothers journey as a young shaker child through adulthood. it was enjoyable even if it was meant for young adults. i bought this book at Hancock shaker village in the berkshire mountains of Mass.the reason i only gave this book 4 stars is simple i wanted to know more.
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