Wednesday, June 5, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: DEADLY


image: DEADLY- Mystery Book Review
DEADLY- Mystery Book Review
DEADLY
Julie Chibbaro
Atheneum Books for Young Readers
2011

Available: Hardcopy, paperback, Kindle,

The year is 1906. The place is New York. Sixteen-year-old Prudence Galewski is not like the other girls at Mrs. Browning's School for Girls. She dreams of doing something important that will improve the life of others. She doesn't want to be just a secretary typist or a wife and mother. She wants to make a difference because she knows how hard life is. Her younger brother is dead. Her father
left for Spanish-American War seven years ago and never returned. All she has is her mother, who’s a midwife. Prudence often assists at the birthings and she knows what it is to struggle to survive. That's why when she's offered a job with Department of Health and Sanitation, she jumps at the opportunity, even if it means she might have to quit school. The job is all- consuming. She becomes Mr. Soper's assistant, the investigating epidemiologist, and together they track down the source of a potential deadly typhoid epidemic. It's a real medical mystery set in a time when little was known about the spread of disease. When they discover and arrest the suspected carrier, an immigrant cook named Mary Mallon, it becomes a media and legal nightmare. Their suspect has never been sick a day in her life. How can she be guilty of spreading the disease? She demands to be set free. But if she's not quarantined, who knows how many people will die? It's up to Prudence and Mr. Soper to prove their case.
This novel takes a look at the infamous Typhoid Mary through the eyes of a young girl who one day hopes to break free from the social modes of the time and work in the field of medicine. The story is rich in texture and emotion. Mature readers should enjoy this visit to an earlier decade.

Target audience: Grades 7-10
Mystery/ suspense: good
Kid appeal: mature readers

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