Cover image for
Title:
The Boston girl
Author(s):
Diamant, Anita.
ISBN/ISSN:
1410475972

9781410475978
Personal Author:
Edition:
Large print edition.
Physical Description:
409 pages (large print) ; 23 cm
General Note:
"Thorndike Press large print basic" -- title page verso.
Abstract:
"Addie Baum is The Boston Girl, born in 1900 to immigrant parents who were unprepared for and suspicious of America and its effect on their three daughters. Growing up in the North End, then a teeming multicultural neighborhood, Addie's intelligence and curiosity take her to a world her parents can't imagine--a world of short skirts, movies, celebrity culture, and new opportunities for women. Addie wants to finish high school and dreams of going to college. She wants a career and to find true love. Eighty-five-year-old Addie tells the story of her life to her twenty-two-year-old granddaughter, who has asked her "How did you get to be the woman you are today." She begins in 1915, the year she found her voice and made friends who would help shape the course of her life. From the one-room tenement apartment she shared with her parents and two sisters, to the library group for girls she joins at a neighborhood settlement house, to her first, disastrous love affair, Addie recalls her adventures with compassion for the naive girl she was and a wicked sense of humor"-- Provided by publisher.
Pub Date:
Thorndike Press Large Print, 2014.
Holds:

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Summary

Summary

From the "New York Times" bestselling author of "The Red Tent "and" Day After Night," comes an unforgettable novel about family ties and values, friendship and feminism told through the eyes of a young Jewish woman growing up in Boston in the early twentieth century.
Addie Baum is The Boston Girl, born in 1900 to immigrant parents who were unprepared for and suspicious of America and its effect on their three daughters. Growing up in the North End, then a teeming multicultural neighborhood, Addie's intelligence and curiosity take her to a world her parents can't imagine--a world of short skirts, movies, celebrity culture, and new opportunities for women. Addie wants to finish high school and dreams of going to college. She wants a career and to find true love.
Eighty-five-year-old Addie tells the story of her life to her twenty-two-year-old granddaughter, who has asked her "How did you get to be the woman you are today." She begins in 1915, the year she found her voice and made friends who would help shape the course of her life. From the one-room tenement apartment she shared with her parents and two sisters, to the library group for girls she joins at a neighborhood settlement house, to her first, disastrous love affair, Addie recalls her adventures with compassion for the naive girl she was and a wicked sense of humor.
Written with the same attention to historical detail and emotional resonance that made Anita Diamant's previous novels bestsellers, "The" "Boston Girl" is a moving portrait of one woman's complicated life in twentieth century America, and a fascinating look at a generation of women finding their places in a changing world.


Author Notes

Anita Diamant is the author of Saying Kaddish, Choosing a Jewish Life, The New Jewish Wedding, Living a Jewish Life, The New Jewish Baby Book, Bible Baby Names, and the bestselling novel, The Red Tent. She lives in Newton, Massachusetts. Anita Diamant is the author of the bestselling novel "The Red Tent" & several books on Judaism, including "Living a Jewish Life", "Choosing a Jewish Life", & "The New Jewish Baby Book". A journalist who has written for "Redbook", the "Boston Globe", the "Boston Phoenix", & other publications, she lives in Newtonville, Massachusetts.

(Publisher Provided) Anita Diamant was born in Newark, New Jersey on June 27, 1951. She received a bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from Washington University in 1973 and a master's Degree in English from the State University of New York at Binghamton in 1975. She worked as a freelance journalist for numerous years and wrote for such magazines and newspapers as the Boston Globe, New England Monthly, Self, Parenting, Parents, McCalls, and Ms. She also wrote about Jewish practice and the Jewish community for Reform Judaism magazine, Hadassah magazine, and jewishfamily.com.

She eventually started writing guidebooks to Jewish life including The New Jewish Wedding; The New Jewish Baby Book; Living a Jewish Life: Jewish Traditions, Customs and Values for Today's Families; and Saying Kaddish: How to Comfort the Dying, Bury the Dead and Mourn as a Jew. She also writes novels including The Red Tent; Good Harbor; The Last Days of Dogtown, Day after Night and The Boston Girl.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

Bestseller Diamant (The Red Tent) tells a gripping story of a young Jewish woman growing up in early-20th-century Boston. Addie Baum, an octogenarian grandmother in 1985, relates long-ago history to a beloved granddaughter, answering the question: "How did I get to be the woman I am today?" The answer: by living a fascinating life. First reminiscing about 1915 and the reading club she became a part of as a teenager, Addie, in a conversational tone, recounts the lifelong friendships that began at club meetings and days by the seaside at nearby Rockport. She tells movingly of the fatal effects of the flu, a relative's suicide, the touchy subject of abortion and its aftermath, and even her own disastrous first date, which nearly ended in rape. Ahead of her time, Addie also becomes a career woman, working as a newspaper typist who stands up for her beliefs at all costs. This is a stunning look into the past with a plucky heroine readers will cheer for. (Dec.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Booklist Review

Much like Brian Morton's recent Florence Gordon, Diamant's new novel is a resonant portrait of a complex woman. When 85-year-old Addie Baum is asked by her granddaughter how she came to be the woman she is today, Addie launches into the story of her life. In a voice that is as comforting as it is fluid, and without a shred of self-pity, Addie tells of her poverty-stricken childhood as the daughter of immigrants living in Boston's North End neighborhood. Against her mother's wishes, she spends the summer of her sixteenth year at an inn for young ladies in a seaside town north of Boston. It's there she meets like-minded girls who will become lifelong friends and sees that there might be a way out for an intelligent young woman with ambition. She also talks about her sister's tragic circumstances; her first disastrous love affair; and her happy marriage. In addition to providing a graphic, page-turning portrait of immigrant life in the early twentieth century, Diamant's novel is an inspirational read that is likely to be a popular book-club choice. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: A media blitz, including an author tour, will back the latest from the best-selling author of the much-loved novel The Red Tent (1997) as well as Day after Night (2009)--Wilkinson, Joanne Copyright 2014 Booklist


Library Journal Review

Eighty-five-year-old Addie Baum reminisces about her life in Diamant's (The Red Tent; Day After Night) step back in time. Addie's been asked by her 22-year-old granddaughter, Ava, to explain how she became the woman she is. Born to Jewish immigrant parents in 1900 in Boston's heavily populated North End, Addie and her two older sisters lived in a tenement with their unhappy parents who did not acclimate to this new world. But Addie's caring and loyal sisters are there for her. In 1915 she is a young teen, interested in her activities at a library group held at a neighborhood settlement house. Recalling situations with her compassionate eye and remarkable sense of humor, Addie observes upheavals large and small: changing women's roles, movies, celebrity culture, short skirts, and the horrible flu pandemic of 1918. She explores feminism, family, and love as well. VERDICT Diamant offers impeccable descriptions of Boston life during these early years of the 20th century and creates a loving, caring lead character who grows in front of our eyes from a naive young girl to a warm, wise elder. Readers interested in historical fiction will certainly enjoy this look at the era, with all its complications and wonders. [See Prepub Alert, 9/8/14.]-Andrea Tarr, Corona P.L., CA (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Excerpts

Excerpts

The Boston Girl Nobody told you? Ava, sweetheart, if you ask me to talk about how I got to be the woman I am today, what do you think I'm going to say? I'm flattered you want to interview me. And when did I ever say no to my favorite grandchild? I know I say that to all of my grandchildren and I mean it every single time. That sounds ridiculous or like I'm losing my marbles, but it's true. When you're a grandmother you'll understand. And why not? Look at the five of you: a doctor, a social worker, two teachers, and now you. Of course they're going to accept you into that program. Don't be silly. My father is probably rolling over in his grave, but I think it's wonderful. Don't tell the rest of them, but you really are my favorite and not only because you're the youngest. Did you know you were named after me? It's a good story. Everyone else is named in memory of someone who died, like your sister Jessica, who was named for my nephew Jake. But I was very sick when you were born and when they thought I wasn't going to make it, they went ahead and just hoped the angel of death wouldn't make a mistake and take you, Ava, instead of me, Addie. Your parents weren't that superstitious, but they had to tell everyone you were named after your father's cousin Arlene, so people wouldn't give them a hard time. It's a lot of names to remember, I know. Grandpa and I named your aunt Sylvia for your grandfather's mother, who died in the flu epidemic. Your mother is Clara after my sister Celia. What do you mean, you didn't know I had a sister named Celia? That's impossible! Betty was the oldest, then Celia, and then me. Maybe you forgot. Nobody told you? You're sure? Well, maybe it's not such a surprise. People don't talk so much about sad memories. And it was a long time ago. But you should know this. So go ahead. Turn on the tape recorder. -- My father came to Boston from what must be Russia now. He took my sisters, Betty and Celia, with him. It was 1896 or maybe 1897; I'm not sure. My mother came three or four years later and I was born here in 1900. I've lived in Boston my whole life, which anyone can tell the minute I open my mouth. Excerpted from The Boston Girl: A Novel by Anita Diamant All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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