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Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt by Deborah Hopkins
on April 8, 2001
This story is told through the eyes of a young slave named Clara. Clara was taken from her mama, so when she arrives at the new plantation a woman named Rachel befriends her. Aunt Rachel, as she becomes known, notices that Clara is not enjoying working in the cotton fields. Aunt Rachel teaches Clara how to sew and Clara eventually starts working in the Big House. While working in the Big House she pays close atttention to the others as they talk and describe the areas around the plantation. Clara secretly goes every night and works on the quilt made of the scraps from the Big House. Clara makes a beautiful quilt in hopes that it will help her and others escape to freedom. Read more to find out what happens to Clara and the others. The illustrations in this story showed how the people of that time period looked, dressed, and worked. Ransome's illustrations enhanced Hopkins' delightful story of Clara and the quilt. The author and illustrator accurately portray specific cultures and customs of the ethnic situation. Overall, this was a delightful story to add to any classroom discussion on the topic of freedom and slaves.