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Hannah's Journal: The Story of an Immigrant Girl
     

Hannah's Journal: The Story of an Immigrant Girl

by Marissa Moss
 

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Bestselling author Marissa Moss explores the immigrant experience in her third captivating Young American Voices journal America!

Hannah's small European village buzzes with tales of life free from persecution in a place called America. Timid cousin Esther has passage for two aboard a ship bound for New York, and Hannah convinces Mama and Papashka to let her use

Overview

Bestselling author Marissa Moss explores the immigrant experience in her third captivating Young American Voices journal America!

Hannah's small European village buzzes with tales of life free from persecution in a place called America. Timid cousin Esther has passage for two aboard a ship bound for New York, and Hannah convinces Mama and Papashka to let her use the extra ticket.

The voyage is long, but Hannah and Esther find a new friend in Samuel, a young orphan aboard the ship, and together they endure the stormy seas and cramped steerage quarters. Finally, the soaring Statue of Liberty greets them at Ellis Island, but will America really be everything they've dreamed of?

About the Author:

Marissa Moss is best known for her handwritten and illustrated journals, including the beloved Amelia series. She lives in Berkeley, California.

Editorial Reviews

This enchanting story relates a ten-year-old Jewish girl's travels from Russia to America in 1901. Marissa Moss' amusing pictures with vibrant colors illustrate the fun text. Great for kids studying America's immigration period. Two thumbs up! Part of the "Young American Voices" series. 2000, Harcourt Brace & Company, $15.00. Ages 8 to 12. Reviewer: A. Braga SOURCE: Parent Council, September 2001 (Vol. 9, No. 1)
School Library Journal
Gr 3-5-Hannah, 10, is a Russian Jew who leaves home for America with her 14-year-old cousin Esther in 1901. From the start, the journey is fraught with complications. Since Esther was originally supposed to travel with 16-year-old Rivka, who died of influenza, the two girls must assume different identities to match the already obtained passports. After a perilous trip filled with intolerable sanitary conditions, storms, and other discomforts, Esther, Hannah, and their new friend Samuel arrive on Ellis Island only to spend an agonizing month waiting for officials to locate their sponsor. Finally, he is found and they begin their new life in New York. The journal entries have a hand-lettered appearance and are sprinkled with colorful drawings and asides. Children may be confused by the fact that Hannah makes it clear from the start that her ability to read and write both Hebrew and Russian is limited, and she doesn't yet speak or write English. The voice seems to ring true, but whose is it? Despite the fact that the lack of formal schooling that young girls like Hannah had available to them presents a quandary for this type of journal format, Moss does give her readers a real sense of the time in which the protagonist lived.-Jane Marino, Scarsdale Public Library, NY Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In her third fictional diary, Moss tells the story of ten-year-old Hannah, a spunky and self-confident girl in a Lithuanian shtetl in 1901. Although Hannah loves her family dearly, she is thrilled when her Uncle Saul offers her a ticket to America. While her mother is torn between wanting her only daughter to have a better life or keeping her close at hand, a pogrom in the village tilts the scale and she is convinced to let Hannah go. In the journal that her father has given for her tenth birthday, Hannah chronicles her trip. Setting out with her 14-year-old cousin Esther, she realizes that she will have to be the leader of the pair; Esther, although older, is timid, fearful, and doesn't believe they will ever make it. Hannah manages to get them both onto the steamship, where they travel in steerage ("I think it should be called storage because we are packed together like potatoes in a bin"). It's not all misery, though; she blissfully describes her first taste of an orange (after being told that you don't eat the rind), and enjoys watching the first-class passengers in their finery. Finally the girls reach New York and, after several anxious weeks on Ellis Island, find themselves on New York's Lower East Side. "Other people from our shtetl live in the same rooms. . . . So although it's a strange new home, it's also cozy and familiar." Children will be fascinated by Hannah's tale, and perhaps amazed that she's allowed to undertake the trip on her own. Teachers will find the book useful when covering units on immigration, although they will also want to use other sources to illustrate the poverty, the abominable working conditions andtheharshness of immigrant life in this period. Moss's illustrations (purportedly drawn by Hannah and thus in a deliberately childish style) are charming and informative and the handwritten text on lined paper adds to the sense of authenticity. The subject of Jewish persecution and emigration is seldom treated on so young a level, but the youthful tone of the narrator presents exactly the right balance of fear and hope. (Fiction. 7-9)

From the Publisher

"Children will be fascinated by Hannah's tale."--Kirkus Reviews
"A vivid introduction to the period and a chance to vicariously experience the times through a most appealing character."--Booklist

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780152021559
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
08/01/1900
Series:
Young American Voices Series
Pages:
56
Product dimensions:
8.04(w) x 9.55(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
730L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
"Children will be fascinated by Hannah's tale."—Kirkus Reviews
"A vivid introduction to the period and a chance to vicariously experience the times through a most appealing character."—Booklist

Meet the Author


MARISSA MOSS is best known for her handwritten illustrated journals, including the enormously popular Amelia series. She lives in Berkeley, California.

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