My Thoughts on Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson

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This was our Neighborhood Book Club selection for April. I read it quickly (I was a little busy in April) the day before bookclub, but I really enjoyed it.

Before reading this book my only knowledge of slavery during the Revolutionary War was from the movie Patriot where one of the characters bravely serves in the War with the promise of freedom for a certain term of service.

In this book, the main character, Isabel, is female and too young to enlist. But she desperately makes agreements with soldiers. She is owned by a prominent Tory, and so if she provides information, certainly she can get freedom or at least help to leave a horrible situation.

Isabel is brave again and again and cruelly disappointed again and again. Finally, at the end, she stops looking to others for her freedom and boldly sets off on her own plan.

This book was so sad in parts, but an important read. It is a “youth” book, but I’d read it before deciding if your youth is ready for it. In one part, Isabel is publicly disciplined, and some readers may not be ready to read that part.

There is a happy surprise at the end, and I am excited to read the sequels!


3 thoughts on “My Thoughts on Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson

    trophy wife said:
    May 9, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    do you think I would like it?

    bloggingonbooks responded:
    May 10, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    I think it’s impossible to not like. It is really well written and has won several awards. It’s a little slow about 2/3 of the way through, but it has a nice mix of history and drama.

    LeeAnn Volk said:
    May 13, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    Try “The Boy in the Striped Pajamas” by John Boyne. Loved the movie. Loved the book.

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