Who: Liza Ketchum, Author.  12-year-old Amelia Forrester, spunky, smart and adventurous protagonist – a true newshound.  Amelia’s mother, Sophie, and henewsgirlr best friend, Estelle – enterprising women seeking new opportunities and freedoms.  A variety of authentic, interesting charaters all working to find their fortunes.

Where & When: A richly detailed San Francisco (also known as Phoenix City), Spring & Summer 1851

What:  Newsgirl, a vivid, entertaining and enjoyable novel for middle grade readers that captures both the essence and the excitement of the California gold rush.  When they arrive in San Francisco after the months-long sea crossing through Panama from Boston, Amelia, her mother and Estelle are exhausted and almost out of money. Their plan to set up a custom dress shop designing fancy lady’s clothing doesn’t look like it will materialize since California is choked with men bent on making their fortunes either in gold or in supplying those miners with everything they need to survive.  Amelia dives right into the excitement and opportunity of her new world with determination: she cuts her hair and dresses as a boy to be part of the gang that sells precious newspapers from back East.  At first her disguise gives her a freedom she’d never imagined; then it leads her on a harrowing adventure, dropping her, lost and injured, in the gold-mining camps.  She resolves to make her way back to San Francisco; and all the while she matures and preservers through every challenge and struggle along the way.

  • Posted by Cori

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