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Nory Ryan's Song Paperback – September 10, 2002
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As Patricia Reilly Giff writes in her note to the reader, the Great Hunger of 1845 to 1852 was a tragic time for the Irish. Enough food to feed double the population was sent out across the sea, while an indifferent government ignored the starving masses. More than one million of the eight million people in Ireland died. Nory Ryan's Song, a fictionalized account based on this terrible era in history, describes the heroic struggles of one girl who refuses to give in to hunger, exhaustion, and hopeless circumstances. Young readers may have heard of the Irish Potato Famine, but they won't truly understand it until they meet Nory. Giff is the author of many beloved books for children, including the Newbery Honor Book Lily's Crossing and the Polk Street School series. (Ages 9 to 12) --Emilie Coulter --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top Customer Reviews
Yeah, Nory's got a pretty nice life. True, her mother's dead and her father's away at sea to fish and pay the family's bills. Still, she has her two older sisters, her grandfather, her little brother Patch, and her best friend Sean to keep her company. And then one day she detects an odd smell in the air.... And even odder screams of panic from over the hills. The smell, as it turns out, is that of potatoes dying of a particularly nasty blight. The screams are the people who realize that death is staring them in the face. Before she knows it, Nory's potato patch is infested as well and the family is left with zero food to get by on. The English lord, Cunningham, who owns the land isn't about to show any mercy to his Irish tenants, and people begin to grow more and more desperate as he takes their lifestock for rent.Read more ›
Things have gone reasonably well for awhile, though, and Nory's family has been able to pay their rent and live mostly off of the potatoes that are planted in their yard. Nory's oldest sister is saving up money to marry a neighbor. Then one of their other neighbors falls too far behind on rent and can't stop the lord from destroying her home. Nory's sister is worried, and she and her fiance use their money to take a ship to the United States, to try to find a better life there.
After Nory's sister leaves, things get even worse. Her father is taking much longer to return from fishing than he usually does, and the lord has come to their home to warn them about not paying their rent. Then all of the potatoes in their yard and the yards of their neighbors turn black and give off a horrible smell. There is no way they can be eaten, but the people have no other food. Will Nory and her family be able to survive?
I liked the history behind this book. It was interesting to read what life was like in Ireland, and to see what people may have been thinking when the potato famine hit. I liked the character of Anna. She was strong and sympathetic although she must have been suffering herself.
I didn't like the idea that everyone thought life in America would be so much better than life in Ireland. I know my history, and know that things weren't much better for the Irish immigrants in America.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I really like it but It is only my opinion so I can't tell others still don't judge a book by its coverPublished 6 months ago by Kith101