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R My Name Is Rachel Hardcover – August 9, 2011

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 550L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Wendy Lamb Books (August 9, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375838899
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375838897
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,714,986 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

PATRICIA REILLY GIFF is the author of many beloved books for children, including the Kids of the Polk Street School books, the Friends and Amigos books, and the Polka Dot Private Eye books. Several of her novels for older readers have been chosen as ALA-ALSC Notable Books and ALA-YALSA Best Books for Young Adults. They include The Gift of the Pirate Queen; All the Way Home; Water Street; Nory Ryan's Song, a Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators Golden Kite Honor Book for Fiction; and the Newbery Honor Books Lily's Crossing and Pictures of Hollis Woods. Lily's Crossing was also chosen as a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Book. Her most recent books are Number One Kid, Big Whopper, Flying Feet, Eleven, Wild Girl, and Storyteller.

More About the Author

Patricia Reilly Giff is the author of many beloved books for children, including the Newbery Honor books, Lily's Crossing and Pictures of Hollis Woods. She lives in Trumbull, Connecticut.

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By KidsReads on November 9, 2011
Format: Hardcover
In 1936, the Depression eats away at almost everyone. Twelve-year-old Rachel and her family are no exception. Pop lost his job at the bank, and there isn't any work available in the city. Rachel finds comfort in her books and at school, but her biggest support is Miss Mitzi, the lady who owns the flower shop. Rachel's mom died when she was just two, and Miss Mitzi has been a very special substitute. Rachel and her younger brother and sister all hope that Miss Mitzi and Pop will get married one day.

Then Rachel gets the news, wonderful and horrible at the same time. Pop has information about a bank job in a town upstate, which would mean leaving the city, all their friends, and Miss Mitzi. At least Pop agrees to bring the stray cat, Clarence, along. Rachel has been feeding him and couldn't bear the thought of just abandoning him.

Living in the country is far different from city living, but Rachel sees potential in the broken down farmhouse and the empty barn. If only Miss Mitzi could live with them. In the meantime, she and Rachel exchange letters all the time. But the family's new hope is destroyed when the promised bank job is given to someone else. More desperate than ever, and with no money to move again, Pop leaves the kids to survive on their own while he finds work. Rachel and her siblings must work together, plant a garden, fish in the stream, and raise chicks and a goat. It's scary on their own, yet somehow they manage. But then the rent comes due and the food runs low...

Patricia Reilly Giff brings this tragic historical time period to vivid light. Some readers will feel a connection with Rachel since so many people are out of work right now. They may relate to Rachel having to do with less, becoming resourceful, and worrying about paying the rent.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sheila on October 4, 2012
Format: Paperback
In 1936, the Depression affects almost everyone. This was a time when jobs were scarce and many people suddenly found themselves poor. Twelve-year-old Rachel and her family are no exception. Pop lost his job in the city and the bills are piling up at home. It seems like there is no longer a way for them to afford to keep their home. So, Pop finds out that a bank job is available out in the countryside and Rachel is scared of this change. The city is all she knows. Miss Mitzi, a neighbor and best friend of Rachel, would have to be left behind. Rachel sees Miss Mitizi as a kind of mother to her because her mother died when she was young. She secretly hopes that Ms. Mitzi will marry her father.

When she sees their new country home with the run down barn and half weather-proofed house, Rachel yearns for Ms. Mitzi to bring some new life to the land. But not everything is terrible as Rachel finds hidden treasures throughout the home. She loves the drawings hidden around and wonders who drew them. But things turn from bad to worse when Pop finds out that the job he was promised is not available and now they are stuck. Pop then finds a new government project to build a bridge. This is great news, but he would have to go away and leave his three children by themselves. Even though Rachel is only twelve years old, she is in charge of the family and feels like she has the weight of the world on her shoulders. It is even more desperate when she finds out her little sister lost the only money Pop left them.

What a story! This book is all about strength and finding beauty everywhere you look. I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the Great Depression or historical fiction. You will be amazed at how desperate situations sometimes bring out the strength in you.
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