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on June 16, 2014
While the book itself is fiction, it brings history alive for older primary kids to get a glimpse of what happened during this time! Kudos to the author, my daughter was properly outraged by the treatment of black people as well as women.
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on February 20, 2009
In the early 1900s, choices for women were limited. For one, women were expected to marry. This was the case with Violet Mayhew's older sister. Chloe, a pioneer for women's rights, was at odds with her parents. Not wanting that fate, she leaves for New York and never returns. Her parents seemed relieved Chloe left, but Violet wasn't.

Three years after her sister's disappearance, Violet finds some letters in her mother's drawer addressed to her from Chloe. After Violet reads the letters, she decides to find her sister. She begins in New York, but her sister has already left. Now she must travel down south where she will be forced to hang out with what her parents termed as the "wrong kind of people". In the end, she'd make up her own mind.

This is a wonderful historical fiction book about the beginnings of women's rights and the struggles to get the freedom we have today.
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on November 27, 2008
I am taking children's literature at our local community college and we had to find a recently written historical fiction book to read and comment on so off the library I went. While I'm not big into reading, I had a hard time putting this book down. The author did a fantastic job at bringing history to life. Never did I feel the story was forced. Never did I feel the facts were boring. Never did I feel the author was trying to make the book authentic by adding in unnecessary information about life in the 1920's. The book just flowed. I learned so much about the passage in Tennessee. Really, a teacher could do an entire unit for weeks and weeks on this book. Awesome read!
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on April 4, 2008
Karen Schwabach's THE HOPE CHEST tells of one Violet, a young lady on the run from her parents in 1917 - and in search of a sister who has left to journey to New York. Violet's search for her sister leads her on to Tennessee, where Chloe is fighting for women's rights, involving Violet in a new world of women's rights. THE HOPE CHEST brings to life early women's suffrage efforts and makes for an adventure-filled read.
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on December 7, 2014
These books (3) were purchased for children from a poor school for Christmas.
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on January 23, 2008
This is the second historical novel by this author (A Pickpocket's Tale) and fully lives up to my expectations. A great read with lots of historical detail!
This time the scene is eastern USA, from PA to TN by way of NYC and DC in 1920. The issue is the final vote for the women's suffrage amendment ratification. The author's unique approach is a kind of dual theme - two girls who will benefit from the legislation - one white, one African American, traveling to TN by train, separated by Jim Crow laws both on the train and in Nashville.
I loved the girls! And the book! And their fellow travelers. I think the achievement of verisimilitude is amazing.
Highly recommended!
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on May 21, 2014
This book was read by my fourth grade son as part of the engage ny curriculum. It is about an entitled 11 year old girl who lives in Susquehanna, PA in the early twentieth century. After deciding to run away from home, the 11 year old girl ends up taking a Forrest Gump like adventure running into the important events of her time, including making significant contributions to the women's sufferage movement. Not only is it poorly written, but it is also inclusive of many far left ideas. It is anti-parent, anti-military, pro-global governance, and pro-feminist. Be concerned if this book show up in your fourth grader's curriculum.
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on March 30, 2013
I gave it to my Grand daughter. But it wasn't exactly what I had hoped it would be. I wanted it to be more about a real hope chest ... not a car! And I hoped it didn't give her ideas about running away!
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on April 27, 2015
This book is a disaster!! While it is a "fun" read, the dark undertones that scream anti parent are a complete turn off to me. The book seems to favor socialism and very liberal ideas. We had to buy it to read for the 4th grade engageNY module. I asked for alternative assignment for my child. I really didn't want to explain the sexual undertones about "shaking a leg" together with my 9 year old either.
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