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Set in America during the optimistic years before the First World War, and told through a series of journal entries, The Hired Girl is the story of a young girl in search of real life and true love. It takes in feminism and housework; money, religion, and social class; literature and education, romanticism and realism, first love and sexual yearnings, cats, hats, and bunions. And it's a comedy.
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By Tanya on 11-08-15
An Instant Classic
Laura Amy Schlitz is a favorite author of mine and THE HIRED GIRL is now my favorite of her works. The narrative voice is unforgettable, reminiscent of Anne Shirley from Lucy Maude Montgomery's classic. Set in 1911, Joan/Janet is an intelligent, fourteen year old girl with a fierce desire to educate herself and be more than a housekeeper and farm hand to her brutal father and three brothers. She runs away to Baltimore where she lies about her age and finds herself taken on as the hired girl in the Rosenbach household. There, she is educated in so many disciplines, from literature to philosophy to religion, art and love. Her diary recounts all her painful, childish mistakes and her exuberant joys over the course of six months, picking up a year later as she is about to begin a new phase of her life. Schlitz's writing is magnificent and so authentic and Rachel Botchan's reading captures Joan's voice beautifully. All girls need to read THE HIRED GIRL.
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