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The Spinning Wheel Secret Kindle Edition

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About the Author

Lillie V. Albrecht (1894-1985), a descendant of seventeenth-century English Puritans, Nantucket Quakers, and Dutch settlers on Long Island, began working as assistant children’s librarian at the Westfield Athenaeum in Westfield, Massachusetts, in 1927, and was the first curator of its Edwin Smith Historical Museum, serving from 1928 to 1952. The museum’s Colonial Kitchen is now named after her. The Albrechts lived for many years in Westfield, where Mrs. Albrecht became interested in the town’s three centuries of history. It was to teach history that she first started writing short stories for children set among the real people and places of western Massachusetts and created the story of fictional antique doll Deborah. The stories she wrote about Deborah’s adventures in Westfield’s history eventually became the full-length children’s book Deborah Remembers. Publishers at first turned down a book about a doll’s memoirs, but encouraged Mrs. Albrecht to write more historical children’s stories. She then wrote Hannah’s Hessian, which appeared in 1958 and was an immediate success; soon her publisher was eager to publish Deborah Remembers, which has since become the best-known of her books. Deborah was followed by three more stories set in Westfield and western Massachusetts in the colonial and Revolutionary eras. Mrs. Albrecht’s granddaughter, historical author Susanne Alleyn, is delighted to bring Lillie V. Albrecht’s books, with additional annotations and background, to a new generation of young readers. Susanne Alleyn (editor & notes) is the author of _A Far Better Rest_, a retelling of Charles Dickens’ classic novel A Tale of Two Cities; the Aristide Ravel historical mystery series, set in Paris during the French Revolution; the nonfiction _Medieval Underpants and Other Blunders: A Writer’s (and Editor’s) Guide to Keeping Historical Fiction Free of Common Anachronisms, Errors, and Myths_; and _The Executioner's Heir: A Novel of Eighteenth-Century France_. Visit her or contact her at www.susannealleyn.com .

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More About the Author

The granddaughter of children's author Lillie V. Albrecht (author of _Deborah Remembers_, _The Spinning Wheel Secret_, and three other historicals), Susanne Alleyn definitely doesn't write for children, unless, like her, they have found guillotines, high drama, and the French Revolution fascinating since the age of ten or so.

Susanne was born in Munich, Germany. After studying acting and singing, and earning a B.F.A. in theater from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, Susanne eventually came to the conclusion that, as an actor, she was quite a good writer, and that looking for an agent or publisher was still easier on the nerves than going to auditions. (She can, nevertheless, still sing a high C when requested.) Having been unwholesomely fascinated by the French Revolution since, at age 9, she read the Classics Illustrated comic-book version of _A Tale of Two Cities_, she set out to write about it. Her debut novel, _A Far Better Rest_, a reimagining of _A Tale of Two Cities_ (what else?) from the point of view of Sydney Carton, was published in 2000. Her latest book is _A Tale of Two Cities: A Reader's Companion_, a heavily annotated edition of the classic.

Though a longtime fan, she had never considered writing mysteries, however, until she suddenly found herself creating a historical mystery plot suggested by an actual series of murders committed in Paris in the early 1800s. Police agent Aristide Ravel made his first appearance in _Game of Patience_ (2006) and returned in _A Treasury of Regrets_ (2007), both set in Paris in the Directoire period of 1796-97. Prequels _The Cavalier of the Apocalypse_ and _Palace of Justice_, the third and fourth mysteries in the series, followed in 2009 and 2010. Susanne intends to cover the entire Revolutionary period in future Aristide Ravel novels.

Her sixth historical novel, _The Executioner's Heir_, is the first of two (non-mystery) novels about real-life Charles Sanson, eighteenth-century executioner of Paris, who has a small featured role, at a much later period of his life, in the Ravel novel _Palace of Justice_. She is currently working on the sequel to _The Executioner's Heir_, but she promises to write more Ravel novels when Charles Sanson's story is at last out of her system.

In a foray into nonfiction, Susanne's book _Medieval Underpants and Other Blunders_ (2012), a writer's guide to avoiding errors and anachronisms in historical fiction, was written during a burst of exasperation over "historical" authors who under-research and give us medieval peasants eating potatoes (which are from South America) or Victorian heroines who think and talk like Valley Girls.

Susanne and her three cats live in New York State. She speaks French very badly. Visit her author website at http://www.susannealleyn.com and her (occasional) blog at http://www.susannealleyn.com/blog.htm .

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By MamaSylvia on February 19, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In 1705, a Puritan tomboy's world is shattered when her mother is captured in an Indian raid, but she stays with a kind pastor's family and sees how useful the womanly skills are that she has scorned.

Mostly likable characters in a story that moves right along, and the few historical flaws (such as a Puritan mother allowing her daughter to abandon housewifery to play with her brothers) would not affect young readers. The formatting is fine, and the charming black-and-white illustrations showed up well even on my Kindle for Android phone. Good story for somewhat advanced readers, comparable to the Bobbsey Twins books in length and vocabulary.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mdogio on November 8, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It was pretty boring, but an awesome book to do for a book review. Haha only because it was like only one hundred pages.
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