Breathing Room by Marsha Hayles

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Evvy Hoffmeister is thirteen years old when her family brings her to Loon Lake Sanatorium to get cured of tuberculosis (TB). Evvy is frightened by her new surroundings; the rules to abide are harsh and the nurses equally rigid. But Evvy soon falls into step with the other girls in her ward. There's Sarah, quiet but thoughtful; Pearl, who adores Hollywood glamour; and Dina, whose harshness conceals a deep strength. Together, the girls brave the difficult daily routines. Set in 1940 at a time of political unrest throughout the U.S. and Europe, this thought-provoking novel sheds light on a much-feared worldwide illness. Hundreds of thousands of people died each year of TB, and many ill children were sent away to sanatoriums to hopefully recover.

This is a masterful novel--both eloquent and moving--that gives voice to those who fought hard to overcome the illness.


About Marsha Hayles

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Marsha Hayles is the author of several books for young children. This is her first novel. She lives in Pittsford, New York, with her family.
Published June 5, 2012 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR). 256 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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In May 1940, Evvy’s father leaves her at Loon Lake Sanatorium, where she’s assigned to a ward with other teenage tuberculosis patients.

May 30 2012 | Read Full Review of Breathing Room

Publishers Weekly

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Set in 1940 at a sanitarium in Loon Lake, Minn., this first novel from picture-book author Hayles (Bunion Burt) is an evocative piece of historical fiction.

May 14 2012 | Read Full Review of Breathing Room

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