Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson

By Laurie Halse Anderson
Published by Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, 2009
336 pages (paperback)

As the Revolutionary War begins, thirteen-year-old Isabel wages her own fight...for freedom. Promised freedom upon the death of their owner, she and her sister, Ruth, in a cruel twist of fate become the property of a malicious New York City couple, the Locktons, who have no sympathy for the American Revolution and even less for Ruth and Isabel. When Isabel meets Curzon, a slave with ties to the Patriots, he encourages her to spy on her owners, who know details of British plans for invasion. She is reluctant at first, but when the unthinkable happens to Ruth, Isabel realizes her loyalty is available to the bidder who can provide her with freedom. (from barnesandnoble.com)

First of all, I love Laurie Halse Anderson’s books. If you haven’t read all her books you should. She is just that awesome of a writer.

Now, onto Chains.

Wow! This book had me hooked from the start. I have read a lot of historical fiction, but Laurie Halse Anderson definitely took this book (and the Revolutionary War) in a different direction. I think the theme of Chains appeals to a lot of readers because it is about putting family first and hoping your decisions will be the best for your loved ones. Isabel makes a lot of risky, yet brave decisions that put her in the middle of the battle for New York City (literally).

An added bonus is an appendix at the back of the book with historical information. For instance, did you know that there was an assassination plot against George Washington during the Revolutionary War? Yeah, I didn’t know that either. At least not until I read Chains. But that even is a subplot in this book and there is more information about it in the appendix.

If you enjoyed Chains, check out the rest of Isabel, Curzon, & Ruth’s stories in Forge. And the final book in the series, Ashes, comes out soon! Whoo hoo!!!


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