The Staircase

The Staircase

by Ann Rinaldi
4.5 16

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The Staircase by Ann Rinaldi

How could Lizzy Enders's father abandon her at a girls school run by nuns? She's surrounded by Catholics--but she's Methodist! Shunned by the other boarders, Lizzy befriends a wandering carpenter named José, who with just three tools--and unflagging faith--builds an elaborate spiral staircase in the new chapel in mere weeks. When he disappears without a trace, Lizzy realizes that the way she sees things is not always the way they are.
Inspired by the legend of the "miraculous" staircase in the Chapel of Loretto in Santa Fe, Ann Rinaldi skillfully blends the mystery surrounding the staircase's builder with the daily trials of a spunky thirteen-year-old girl growing up in the 1870s.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780547351469
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 06/01/2002
Series: Great Episodes
Sold by: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 599,007
Lexile: 590L (what's this?)
File size: 3 MB
Age Range: 10 - 12 Years

About the Author

ANN RINALDI is an award-winning author best known for bringing history vividly to life. She has received numerous starred reviews and awards, as well as widespread recognition for her historical novels. Ms. Rinaldi lives in central New Jersey.

ANN RINALDI is an award-winning author best known for bringing history vividly to life. A self-made writer and newspaper columnist for twenty-one years, Ms. Rinaldi attributes her interest in history to her son, who enlisted her to take part in historical reenactments up and down the East Coast. She lives with her husband in central New Jersey. Visit her online at

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The Staircase 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book a lot. It is a good read for anyone and everyone. Lizzy, although not the most religious girl in the world, cares about her pets and dead mother, and doesn't care for Latin prayers. She is different from the Catholics surrounding her, yet matches them – perhaps more – in helping others.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
New Mexico historical fiction.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is awesome!!! I recommend it for all ages! This is a very good book! Favorite book of mine! You should definitly read it! :) :D
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The staircase is real, I saw it myself.
Daniela Lujan More than 1 year ago
As someone who lives in NM, is a practicing Catholic, have heard the story of the miraculous staircase and seen it for myself- I have to say this was an amazing story & one I could definitely appreciate. Two thumbs way up! ;)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
read it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
not Rinaldi's best. i got bored at times. the legend it is based on is cool, but this one doesn't have enough detail.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ann Rinaldi is a terrific author of historical fiction novels. It is no wonder her books are award winning and widely recognized. After being abandoned at a Catholic convent school by her Father in Sante Fe Lizzie Enders, a 13-year-old Methodist girl struggles to fit in her new home. By inviting a beggar carpenter to build as staircase at the church, she unknowingly participates in a miracle. Ann Rinaldi did a fantastic job at intertwining a classic legend from Sante Fe's history with the adventures of a young girl struggling to grow up in a new place where she doesn't quite fit in. Lizzie has many adventures and makes some good friends along the way, whose stories make it impossible to set this book down. "The Staircase" was a fun and easy read. This book will captivate the imagination of anyone who enjoys historical fiction. It is a great book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have read a great many books in my time, literally more then 1,000. And this was most certainly one of the best. Lizzy Enders is a strong and self-sufficent girl, who copes bravely with her father's abandonment, and befriends an old lady, who is considered senial by the nuns. She's the only non-Catholic in the school, and her roommate is the Bishop's grand-niece, who is insufferable. Lizzy is alone in a world she doesn't understand, but not for long. The friends she makes and the adventures she takes leave her memories for a lifetime. And, as as is in all good books, the story has a happy ending, one which will make you smile, no matter what the mood.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Lizzie Enders has just witnessed her mothers death, had to leave her best friend, had a 60 day trip to Santa Fe, and her father has just abandoned her at a Catholic School for girls. Lizzie is Methodist and finds it very hard to fit in at a Catholic School. She makes no friends with her peers, but instead with some adults, one of whom is a 'begger man carpenter'. The church is in need of a staircase to the choir loft, so they start a novena for Saint Joseph, yet resent letting the carpenter in to work. Lizzie of course does not understand how they can believe that praying will make a staircase 'magically appear.' Through her struggles in Santa Fe, Lizzie meets many who make a difference in her life and in her opinions. This book was really good, and if you read all of Ann Rinaldi's books like I do, then I definately reccomend reading it, it won't be a waste of time!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is very different from Ann Rinaldi's other books. Her other books usually take place in a northern eastern coast city or state. This book takes place in New Mexico. Instead of having English ties, the characters in this book have Spanish ties. Yes, this book is different, and that is why I like it. It does take place in history, of course, but not in a highlighted time of American History. This book concentrates on the life for convent school borders, which was very harsh. If you want to read something different from Rinaldi, then read this. I love all of her other books, but I guess that it just shows that Rinaldi can write in different styles and still make a book great.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hey i have to do a book and one of my least favorate genres historical fiction so when i saw this at the library and it was already checked outi thought my nook so is it wotlrth buying or should o get it from my other libraryfor cheap?