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The Boston Girl: A Novel by [Diamant, Anita]
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The Boston Girl: A Novel Kindle Edition

4.1 out of 5 stars 2,921 customer reviews

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Length: 333 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Audible book:
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Editorial Reviews Review

An Amazon Best Book of the Month, December 2014: There’s a lot that’s familiar about The Boston Girl. A tale of a plucky immigrant girl at the turn of the century, it addresses some of the same themes as other contemporary novels, including the author’s breakout The Red Tent: religion, feminism, the pull between tradition and the modern world. Here, our heroine is Addie Baum of Boston, now in her eighties telling the story of her life to her twentysomething granddaughter. And what a life it was: born in 1900, Addie survived the travails of aggressive greenhorn parents, world wars, abusive men and a flu epidemic to become a woman, finally, with a voice and a life of her own. What makes this story engaging is just that old-fashioned straightforwardness, as well as its perfect ear for the locutions of the time. Someone is “smiling to beat the band.” Addie “can really cut a rug.” You had to “kiss a lot of frogs before [you] found a prince.” No wonder this book rings so true: reading it feels like lazing away a winter afternoon with a beloved aging relative paging through a family scrapbook. – Sara Nelson


“Strong female ties form this story’s core. Through these relationships…Diamant brings to life a piece of feminism’s forgotten history [and reminds us] there will always be those who try to prescribe what you should be. Good friends are those who help you find out for yourself.” (Good Housekeeping)

“Diamant infuses [The Boston Girl] with humor and optimism, illuminating a wrenching period of American progress through the eyes of an irresistible heroine.” (People)

"A graphic, page-turning portrait of immigrant life in the early twentieth inspirational read.” (Booklist)

“The story of every immigrant and the difficulties of adapting to and accepting an unfamiliar culture." (Huffington Post)

"Enjoyable fiction with a detailed historical backdrop." (Kirkus)

"Anita Diamant is known for her thought-provoking novels about women's lives, from Biblical times to the present day...The Boston Girl becomes the story of the 20th century and the ever-changing roles of women within it." (BookPage)

“Ravishing. . . .whip-smart, warm, and full of feeling… deeply pleasurable. . . you can’t help wanting to linger.” (Boston Globe)

“Crisp, lively, clear, wry, affectionate, compulsively readable and very entertaining…The Boston Girl’s…[narrator] is supremely brave and bighearted — a marvelous role model no matter how you parse it.” (San Francisco Chronicle)

The Boston Girl convincingly traces the story of a scrappy, intelligent immigrant, who does more than merely survive the 20th century; she embraces it all—tragedies, joys, and the humdrum—with unflagging passion.” (Miami Herald)

"Addie is…a good storyteller, and her descriptions of the human devastation of World War I and the flu epidemic … have an immediacy that blows away any historical dust." (USA Today)

“Anita Diamant’s The Boston Girl introduces[a] woman of substance…[who] relates how growing up in a time of gender inequality, strict family expectations, and a widening generation gap of social values made her a successful person.” (Boston Herald)

“A vivid, affectionate portrait of American womanhood …Diamant has built her career on taking women seriously, and Addie Baum is another strong heroine with an irrepressible voice.” (Los Angeles Times)

“Engaging… interesting, informative, and a good read.” (New York Journal of Books)

This compelling new novel by the author of the book club favorite The Red Tent (1997) also celebrates a woman’s story.” (Dallas Morning News)

“Readers…will feel lucky that they read this richly textured all-American tale.” (Historical Novel Society)

“An exploration of the immigrant experience, love,marriage and friendship, plus many significant world events, including World War I and II, Prohibition, the Spanish flu epidemic, civil rights and the sexual revolution. Through it all, family and friendship remain resilient.” (Fort Worth Star-Telegram)

“A gripping story of a young Jewish woman growing up in early-20th-century Boston. . . A stunning look into the past with a plucky heroine readers will cheer for.” (Publishers Weekly)

“Diamant offers impeccable descriptions of Boston life during those early years of the 20th century and creates a loving, caring lead character who grows in front of our eyes.” (Library Journal)

Praise for Day After Night:

“Anita Diamant's new novel offers all the satisfactions found in her previous works The Red Tent and The Last Days of Dogtown: rich portraits of female friendship, unflinching acknowledgment of life's cruelty and resolute assertion of hope, enfolded in a strong story line developed in lucid prose…. Day After Night demonstrates the power of fiction to illuminate the souls of people battered by the forces of history.” (Washington Post Book World)

“Extraordinary… Like characters in the The Red Tent, Shayndel, Leonie, Tedi and Zorah are indomitable… Diamant once again gives us strong women, wonderful women, inspirational women, who overcome unimaginable obstacles. Thanks to Diamant, we can believe that anyone can start anew.” (Miami Herald)

“Diamant opens an important historical window in exploring the physical characteristics of Atlit and the personal ramifications it had for those inside its walls.” (Tampa Tribune)

“Compulsively readable… [An] astutely imagined story… Diamant opens a window into a time of sadness, confusion and optimism that has resonance for so much that’s both triumphant and troubling in modern Jewish history.” (Publishers Weekly)

“Diamant tenderly portrays four women in transitions… A warm, intensely human reckoning with unbearable sorrow and unquenchable hope.” (Kirkus)

“Although the history is compelling, the real interest lies in the way Diamant shows these women learning to go on—forming new bonds, rediscovering simple daily pleasures, coming to terms with the past. Fluid storytelling and well-drawn characters make this a sure bet for a wide range of readers.” (Booklist)

“[A] searing novel… ultimately uplifting.” (More)

Praise for The Last Days of Dogtown:

"[An] excellent novel. A lovely and moving portrait of society's outcasts living in an unforgiving and barren but harshly beautiful landscape. Even as Dogtown's population dwindles, the book affirms the essential humanity of its poor and stubborn residents, for whom each day of survival is a victory." (New York Times Book Review)

  "The book has a compelling page-turning pull, as Diamant movingly illuminates an eclectic society based on both "a live and let live" detachment and a deep mutual dependence. Diamant beautifully ties these collective stories together, with spare yet vividly descriptive prose that transports the reader into the New England of Hawthorne and Melville." (Boston Globe)

"[W]hat [Diamant] has created is the overlay of a modern sensibility on an imagined past. Diamant's descriptive passages are as eloquent as a Congregationalists and her theme -- that life teems even as it dwindles -- has all the more power for its subtle, unsentimental articulation." (Washington Post)

"A group of savvy women in early-1800s Massachusetts refuse to live by society's rules. Their dramas are soap opera juicy--but much better written." (Glamour)

"A beautiful novel that captures yourheart." (The Jerusalem Post)

Product details

  • File Size: 1995 KB
  • Print Length: 333 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; Reprint edition (December 9, 2014)
  • Publication Date: December 9, 2014
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00KU4PW86
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,785 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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