Friday, March 11, 2011

A Heart Most Worthy by Siri Mitchell - REVIEWED

1918 Boston…the setting for a story about a group of people struggling to find their place in a new country…in a new culture…in a new era. Three girls work together as seamstresses in an upscale gown shop. All of them hold secrets within their hearts, and all of them are trying to survive in a world where women have little influence at all outside of marriage and family. The girls all share an Italian heritage, and that fact alone sets them apart as “dirty immigrants” in early Boston. There are other remnants of the Italian immigrants who have chosen to show their anger toward those who look down on them through anarchy. The end result…well, it’s kind of complicated.

Siri Mitchell must have done a TON of research to re-create the life of Italian immigrants in Boston in 1918. She creates a community of people so believable that the reader is able to feel their longing and frustration as they try to make a place for themselves in a new country. She also creates believable conflict between the “Americans” and the Italians as they begin to create relationships and move a new generation into equality and freedom not known to either of them prior to this.

Her main characters are three young girls just trying to survive from day to day. They long for love, security, a feeling of worth just like everyone, but they must face prejudice, poverty and a host of other problems as they struggle to find their place in the world. There is a type of “mafia” operating in Boston that entangles one young lady, and from which another young lady is secretly fleeing. Unknown to them all, their lives are intertwined in more ways than they can possibly realize. When those connections become know to them, then and only then are they able to accept their lives and move forward with some sense of purpose and confidence.

This is a very well-written, multi-layered story that will keep the reader firmly planted in 1918 Boston society. Further that than, you will experience life as an Italian immigrant in the milieu of a new country trying to acclimate itself to true freedom. It’s exciting, dangerous and believably human, and you will gain new appreciation for the struggles of those who have gone before us in this great country.

To learn more about this fabulous book,go to THIS POST to read a sample chapter!


Mocha with Linda said...

Loved this book.

Kav said...

I love the Siri Mitchell books I have read but they have all been contemporary. I think it's time to pick up a historical and I'll start with this one.

Unknown said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed this one -- the research was definitely eye-opening! Thanks for taking the time to write and post such a thoughtful review.

Happy reading!


Siri said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed this one! Thanks so much for taking the time to write such a thoughtful and encouraging review. It did require a lot of research, but I enjoyed every minute of it!

Many blessings,