And the 2009 Newbery Award Winner is …..

Okay, I told myself I would finish reading more of the Newbery Award contenders before making any comments and predictions. And then I told myself that I would finish reading Chains, by Laurie Halse Anderson, before making any comments about it.

But I can’t help it. I’ve got to tell you what a great book this is! It definitely deserves some kind of Newbery Honor.

The main character in Chains, Isabel, is a slave girl during revolutionary days. The historical setting creates a high-stakes drama with Isabelle and her sister’s lives very often at risk. Anderson has skillfully interwoven actual historical excerpts that reinforce the storyline.

I’m listening to the audiobook version and my compliments go out to the reader as well, whose voice ranges from Southern twang to British accent, from young to grown and from soft-spoken to heartless harshness.

Every time I get in the car and push play, this story grabs me and takes me for a ride. With any story that includes slavery, the trip gives a glimpse to a part of our past that we wish didn’t exist, where people treat each other with unspeakable cruelty. I’m rooting, no praying, for Isabel, as she makes her way in this dangerous world. And I’ll be rooting for this book on January 26th when the Newbery Award Medal goes to…..
Only time will tell!

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