Shutting Out the Sky by Deborah Hopkinson
Life in the Tenements of New York, 1880-1924

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In a stunning nonfiction debut, award-winning author Deborah Hopkinson focuses on five immigrants' stories to reveal the triumphs and hardships of early 1900s immigrant life in New York.

Acclaimed author Hopkinson recounts the lives of five immigrants to New York's Lower East Side through oral histories and engaging narrative. We hear Romanian-born Marcus Ravage's disappointment when his aunt pushes him outside to peddle chocolates on the street. And about the pickle cart lady who stored her pickles in a rat-infested basement. We read Rose Cohen's terrifying account of living through the Triangle Shirtwaist fire, and of Pauline Newman's struggles to learn English. But through it all, each one of these kids keeps working, keeps hoping, to achieve their own American dream.

About Deborah Hopkinson

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Deborah Hopkinson is the author of such award-winning children’s books as SWEET CLARA AND THE FREEDOM QUILT; GIRL WONDER: A BASEBALL STORY IN NINE INNINGS; A BAND OF ANGELS; and Dear America: HEAR MY SORROW. Her nonfiction books, SHUTTING OUT THE SKY, LIFE IN THE TENEMENTS OF NEW YORK, a Jane Addams Peace Award Honor book and an Orbis Pictus Award Honor Book; and UP BEFORE DAYBREAK, COTTON AND PEOPLE IN AMERICA, a Carter G. Woodson Honor Award winner, have garnered much acclaim. Deborah lives near Portland, Oregon, where, in addition to writing, she works full-time as the Vice President for Advancement for the Pacific Northwest College of Art.
Published October 1, 2003 by Orchard Books. 144 pages
Genres: History, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Nonfiction at its best and a good companion to Mary Jane Auch’s Ashes of Roses (2002), Johanna Hurwitz’s Dear Emma (2002), and other recent works on the subject.

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The Trades

Take the case of thirteen-year-old Pauline Newman, a garment worker and one of a handful of immigrant children Hopkinson focuses on: Pauline remembered a sign in the factory that read, IF YOU DON'T COME IN ON SUNDAY YOU NEED NOT COME IN ON MONDAY.

Jul 07 2003 | Read Full Review of Shutting Out the Sky: Life in...

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