February 8, 2013

Hattie Ever After Blog Tour: Review

Hattie Ever After (Hattie #2)
Author: Kirby Larson
Genre: YA/MG Historical Fiction
Release Date: February 12, 2013
Publisher: Delacorte Press for Young Readers

Description:

After leaving Uncle Chester's homestead claim, orphan Hattie Brooks throws a lasso around a new dream, even bigger than the Montana sky. She wants to be a reporter, knowing full well that a few pieces published in the Arlington News will not suffice. Real reporters must go to Grand Places, and do Grand Things, like Hattie's hero Nellie Bly. Another girl might be stymied by this, but Hattie has faced down a hungry wolf and stood up to a mob of angry men. Nothing can squash her desire to write for a big city newspaper. A letter and love token from Uncle Chester's old flame in San Francisco fuels that desire and Hattie jumps at the opportunity to get there by working as a seamstress for a traveling acting troupe. This could be her chance to solve the mystery of her "scoundrel" uncle and, in the process, help her learn more about herself. But Hattie must first tell Charlie that she will not join him in Seattle. Even though her heart approves of Charlie's plan for their marriage, her mind fears that saying yes to him would be saying no to herself. Hattie holds her own in the big city, literally pitching her way to a byline, and a career that could be even bigger than Nellie Bly's. But can making headlines compensate for the pain of betrayal and lost love? Hattie must dig deep to find her own true place in the world. Kirby Larson once again creates a lovingly written novel about the remarkable and resilient young orphan, Hattie Inez Brooks. 


Review:

Hattie Ever After is the second book in a middle grade/young adult historical fiction series that is following the adventures of Hattie Inez Brooks. In this second installment, Hattie has finally paid off her uncle's IOU and is ready to leave the homestead claim in Montana. She's unsure of what to do with her life now and finally decides to travel to San Francisco in order to work as a seamstress for a traveling acting troupe. She is determined to become a reporter and figures that a good story might be found in San Francisco and a mystery surrounding her uncle and a former love of his. Leaving for San Francisco is a hard decision for Hattie because it means she must tell Charlie that she can't go to Seattle with him, despite his plans of marrying her. Will Hattie be able to hold her own in the big city?

This is a wonderfully written series that draws in readers of all ages. The reader is immediately drawn to Hattie's character and her adventures. The book is set in the 1920's, which makes this a great historical setting for the readers to learn more about while enjoying a great story. Hattie is a strong female lead character and I immediately liked her tenacity and honesty. She has her heart set on becoming a reporter and nothing will get her down. Hattie's life is very realistic and shows what a young woman's life in that time period probably looked like. The writing was fantastically done, with the pace and the vocabulary a perfect fit for middle grade as well and young adult readers. This is a very interesting book that will entertain readers while teaching them things about the history of America and life in the past. Hattie is very easy to like and I found myself rooting for her to succeed from the first chapter. Readers will devour this book and will find themselves eagerly awaiting the next installment. Great for fans of historical fiction and for middle grade/young adult readers.