Michael O'Halloran is the charming Gene Stratton-Porter novel of an orphaned newspaper seller who asks nothing of the world except to "be square". The book presents a vivid description of American life in 1914 and, though the characters suffer many hardships, the overall tone is so upbeat that it's easy to see why this book outsold Pollyanna in 1916. Stratton-Porter's skills as a naturalist make the country scenes especially vibrant. Her ear for dialogue is unsurpassed, demonstrating to the listener that if life in America wasn't like this, it should have been. Listeners of this book will be led to wonder if children and adults did speak this nicely to each other once upon a time and if the world would be a better place if everyone could just "be square".
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