I don’t remember how this book ended up on my list. I haven’t actually been getting much serious (or not serious) reading done lately, although I’ve done a few re-reads of Dumplin’ (awesome as always) and Harry Potter und der Stein der Weisen (part of my annual attempt to remember languages I haven’t spoken for a few decades). Given much thought, I probably would have found something a bit lighter, especially since I usually don’t go for things with puppets of any kind. They’re a little like clowns to me—kind of creepy and maybe a little menacing, unless they are fluffy, cute animal puppets which are a completely different thing.
Anyhoo, this is a great book. There are bad guys — rich aristocrats cheating poor people and a few of their own supposed friends, sending the undeserving off to jail or to the colonies – and a few scrappy good guys and a lot of intrigue, action, and close escapes. Letty and Caleb become friends and partners-in-making-things-right, and you’re with them all the way. It’s not a happy story, really, but it works. As a read-aloud, there could be a lot to discuss with the right group of kids: gossip, discrimination, power, women’s roles, poverty, justice. So take a break from reality and travel back to 1752 for a few hours. You’ll be glad you did.
Hell and High Water by Tanya Landman