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Daughter of Winter
     

Daughter of Winter

4.0 1
by Pat Lowery Collins
 
As the ground of her past shifts, a girl finds her way to an unexpected future in this compelling historical novel about survival and strength.

It’s 1849, and twelve-year-old Addie lives in the shipbuilding town of Essex, Massachusetts. Her father has left the family to seek gold on the West Coast, and now the flux has taken the lives of her mother

Overview

As the ground of her past shifts, a girl finds her way to an unexpected future in this compelling historical novel about survival and strength.

It’s 1849, and twelve-year-old Addie lives in the shipbuilding town of Essex, Massachusetts. Her father has left the family to seek gold on the West Coast, and now the flux has taken the lives of her mother and baby brother, leaving Addie all alone. Her fear of living as a servant in some other home drives her into the snowy woods, where she survives on her own for several weeks before a nomadic, silver-haired Wampanoag woman takes her in. Slowly, the startling truth of Addie’s past unfolds. Through an intense ancient ceremony, and by force of her own wits and will, Addie unravels the mystery of her identity — and finds the courage to build a future unlike any she could ever have imagined.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Danielle Williams
Addie's father does not worry about leaving her, her mother and little brother alone while he goes to seek his fortune in the gold fields, but he could not have realized that both Addie's mother and brother would fall ill and die, leaving Addie alone with no one to turn to. Addie is able to fool the concerned people in the town where she goes to school for a short time, but she realizes that she cannot hide the truth from them forever. Addie's biggest fear is being sent away from the home she hass always known and being lost from her father when he returns. She is determined to avoid that at all costs, even at the cost of hiding their deaths for as long as she can. What follows is an amazing and terrifying adventure that sets Addie on a road to discover more about her life than she could have ever imagined. Set in the small town of Essex, Massachusetts during the winter and spring of 1849-1850, Collins delivers a gripping tale of self-discovery. At times, Addie's story is terrifying and the reader wonders if Addie will make it through the next day, let alone the winter. But Addie's strength of character gives a hopeful edge to the story and even at Addie's darkest, most uncertain hour, there is enough hopeful resolve in the story that the reader is compelled to continue. Reviewer: Danielle Williams
School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—Addie has a secret: her mother and brother have recently died of the flux. With her father on his way to California to pan for gold, the 13-year-old is determined to survive on her own until he returns. Fearful that the townswomen of Essex, MA, will find out that she is living alone, she concocts a plan to live in the wilderness as her father taught her. But it is the dead of winter, and Addie soon finds that survival is more difficult than she could have imagined. When Nokummus, a local Wampanoag woman who lives nearby, comes to help her, Addie discovers that this woman knows more about her and her past than she could have imagined, changing her life forever. This is a beautifully written story with deep characters and a strong sense of place. While the author sometimes panders to stereotypes—Nokummus is viewed as a wise woman, fearful of what will happen to her relationship with Addie when the girl's father returns—she is mostly spot-on with characters and the setting. However, Addie's relationship with a local boy feels strained and makes the girl seem older than she is. For the most part, though, this quiet, haunting book will appeal to fans of historical fiction.—Necia Blundy, Marlborough Public Library, MA
Kirkus Reviews
Twelve-year-old Addie has a lot to deal with after her father leaves for the 1849 gold rush and then her mother and younger brother die of fever. She is both convinced her Massachusetts neighbors will not allow her to run the family farm alone and determined not to be boarded out to another family. In the middle of winter she flees, constructs a shelter and gamely lives off the land, awaiting her father's return. An elderly Wampanoag woman, Nokummus, provides much-needed aid and, eventually, shelter and companionship, as well as gradually revealing the secrets of Addie's past and the astonishing reason that she bore so little resemblance to her mother. While the setting is vividly portrayed, a surprising historical anachronism sneaks in: the appearance of a photograph printed on card stock (as opposed to a daguerreotype) taken before 1837—predating its invention by years. The narrative is at its strongest while Addie manages alone; her experiences with Nokummus sometimes push credibility and seem out of character for such an amazingly determined and strong-willed child. Still, history lovers will enjoy her adventures. (Historical fiction. 10-14)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780763645007
Publisher:
Candlewick Press
Publication date:
10/12/2010
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
1,371,796
Product dimensions:
6.90(w) x 11.28(h) x 0.98(d)
Lexile:
1080L (what's this?)
Age Range:
10 Years

Meet the Author

Pat Lowery Collins is the author of Hidden Voices as well as many other acclaimed novels and picture books. She lives in Gloucester, Massachusetts.

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Daughter of Winter 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Addie's mother and brother die in the middle of winter. Addie's father has left to find gold on the West Coast. All alone, she struggles to maintain normalcy. She's so afraid that the townspeople will force someone to take her in and she will become a servant. Finally, when all hope is lost, she flees out into the night. She survives on her own with her cat for company. Addie's not sure how long she will be able to last. She grows weak and then sick. Eventually, Nokummus finds her. Nokummus, an elderly Wampanoag woman, takes Addie under her wing. Addie regains her health and her strength, and under the watchful eye of Nokummus, she learns the truth about her past. DAUGHTER OF WINTER is a one part survival story and one part coming-of-age tale. Addie struggles against the town, against nature, and against herself to find her true destiny.