Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson.
Laurie Halse Anderson is a very skilled writer and I recommend all her books.
This particular book of hers is set in the 1770′s, during the time of the Revolutionary War. It follows the story of a young slave girl, named Isabel, and her little sister, Ruth.
It’s not a soft tale, but has a very engaging plot. There is so much going on, yet the reader never feels overwhelmed. I didn’t want the book to end! Luckily the sequel is coming out soon.
Chains forces you to really think about the Revolutionary War. I often found myself torn between the British and the Colonists, for Isabel’s sake. Because her whole goal is to be free from slavery.
I’ve never really sat down to contemplate the Revolutionary Was and I didn’t know as much about it as I do know, having read Chains. I think that people tend to romanticize the war but never stop to think about what it was like to actually BE there caught (or chained) between the two sides.
I feel Anderson describes the 1770′s without being dry or difficult to understand. And in historical fiction, I think that’s important because people can become overwhelmed by old dialogue and other such things, which in turn, makes the book harder to understand and enjoy.
I think it would make a really good class book, because it would start great debates and conversations. Anderson has made history come alive to the point where I could almost imagine being there. It’s definitely historically accurate and a good way to learn about the American Revolutionary War.