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The Resource Audacity, Melanie Crowder

Audacity, Melanie Crowder

Label
Audacity
Title
Audacity
Statement of responsibility
Melanie Crowder
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
"A historical fiction novel in verse detailing the life of Clara Lemlich and her struggle for women's labor rights in the early 20th century in New York."--
Writing style
Character
Award
  • Amelia Bloomer List, 2016
  • Jefferson Cup Award for Older Readers, 2016.
  • Notable Books for a Global Society, 2016.
  • YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults: Top Ten, 2015.
  • YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults, 2016.
  • YALSA Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults, 2017.
Review
  • Grades 7-12 From the shtetl, through the Russian Empire pogroms and steerage, Clara Lemlich and her family finally arrive in teeming New York City. Crowder’s verse novel tells the eastern European immigrant story at the turn of the last century. Here, whether in the Old or New World, the men study Torah and the women work. Clara not only endures her hard labor in abysmal conditions but feels deeply for those women and children suffering around her. After the workday, Clara studies English, always reaching for her destiny. In short order, it is the labor movement that will be her calling and unionizing that will be her vehicle. Crowder develops Clara’s education from the mean streets through persuasive verse: “I have only been in this country two years but quickly, I learned you have to fight for what you want—you have to take what you need.” It is Clara who claims that all she has is “audacity.” Thanks to audacious Clara, this fictional narrative, based on Lemlich’s real-life experiences, illuminates the labor-union movement, especially the women’s strike known as the Uprising of the 20,000. -- Bush, Gail (Reviewed 12-01-2014) (Booklist, vol 111, number 7, p50)
  • /* Starred Review */ Gr 7 Up — Written in verse, this novel is loosely based on the life of Clara Lemlich Shavelson, the leader of New York shirtwaist strike of 1909. Clara and her family are Jewish Russians who flee the anti-Semitism of turn-of-the-century Russia to find a better life in America. However, Clara still experiences gender and religious oppression in New York. She is unable to gain the education she desires, because she is forced to work in a sweatshop, and she can't rise above her given status as an immigrant worker because foreign women are taught only rudimentary English. But "Inside I am anything/ but fresh off the boat./ I have been ready for this/ possibility/ all my life," Clara declares, and she proves that she has the audacity to do the impossible for a female and a Jew: organizing a woman's union and ultimately having her voice heard. The verse form of the narrative lends lightness to an otherwise bleak topic and moves the story along quickly, while artful formatting of the text creates and sustains mood. This book stands alone in its topic and time frame, with only Michelle Markel's picture book Brave Girl (HarperCollins, 2013) as a nonfiction companion. With historical notes, interviews with Clara's family members, and a glossary of Yiddish terms, Audacity is an impactful addition to any historical fiction collection.—Brittany Staszak, Glencoe Public Library, IL --Brittany Staszak (Reviewed October 1, 2014) (School Library Journal, vol 60, issue 10, p117)
  • Crowder’s (Parched) use of free verse in this fictionalization of Russian-Jewish immigrant Clara Lemlich’s life brings a spare poignancy to a familiar history: a poor family’s flight from Russia following the 1903 pogrom, an arduous journey to Ellis Island, survival in the tenements of New York’s Lower East Side, and Clara’s grueling work in garment industry sweatshops. The only daughter in a strict Orthodox family, forbidden to learn Russian, read, or write, Clara secretly defies her father’s decrees, hungry for education and determined to become a doctor. As she endures horrific working conditions in America, her dream changes, and she becomes a tireless leader of the union movement. Fighting to organize the women workers, she is locked out of jobs, jailed, and beaten: “They do not speak/ but their message is/ painfully/ clear/ slap scratch/ punch pummel/ kick kick spit.” In addition to a closing note that provides context and biographical information, an endearing interview with Lemlich’s children and grandchildren gives a glimpse into how this stubborn and fiery young woman lived out the balance of her life. Ages 12–up. Agent: Ammi-Joan Paquette, Erin Murphy Literary Agency. (Jan.) --Staff (Reviewed November 10, 2014) (Publishers Weekly, vol 261, issue 45, p)
  • /* Starred Review */ A novel in verse featuring the real-life Clara Lemlich, a courageous, tenacious warrior for workers' rights in turn-of-the-20th-century New York City.Newly arrived in New York from Russia, she finds employment in a sweatshop, where young immigrant girls toil in dangerous conditions, cheated and harassed by bosses, earning pennies for long hours of work. Sacrificing her dream of an education and in spite of her family's dire economic straits, she devotes her energy to supporting these girls, fighting for the inclusion of women in the all-male garment union and winning them their own local. She organizes strikes against individual sweatshops and leads the Uprising of the 20,000, during which she and the other young women strikers are repeatedly beaten by police and hired thugs, arrested and jailed. From her constricted life in a Russian shtetl and difficult journey to America to the choices she makes in her new life, readers hear Clara's strong, clear voice in action-packed verses that convey with intense emotion her conflicts and conviction, her deepest thoughts, and her doubts and triumphs. Crowder breathes life into a world long past and provides insight into the achievements of one determined woman who knows she will "give / without the thought / of ever getting back, / to ease the suffering of others. / That, / I think, / I will be doing / the rest of my life." Compelling, powerful and unforgettable. (historical note, interview, glossary, sources) (Historical fiction/poetry. 12-18)(Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2014)
Assigning source
Provided by publisher
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10393933
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Crowder, Melanie
Dewey number
[Fic]
Index
no index present
Intended audience
1120L
Intended audience source
Lexile
Interest level
MG+
LC call number
PZ7.5.C78
LC item number
Au 2015
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 7
  • 12
Nature of contents
bibliography
Reading level
6.6
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Study program name
Accelerated Reader AR
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Lemlich, Clara
  • Lemlich, Clara
  • Lemlich, Clara
  • Women in the labor movement
  • Immigrants
  • Russian Americans
  • Jews
  • Labor movement
  • Immigrants
  • Russian Americans
  • Jews
  • Women in the labor movement
  • New York (N.Y.)
  • New York (N.Y.)
  • New York (State)
Target audience
adolescent
Label
Audacity, Melanie Crowder
Instantiates
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references
Carrier category
volume
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
1059924
Extent
pages cm
Isbn
9780399168994
Lccn
2014018466
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780399168994
  • (OCoLC)880349839
Label
Audacity, Melanie Crowder
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references
Carrier category
volume
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
1059924
Extent
pages cm
Isbn
9780399168994
Lccn
2014018466
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780399168994
  • (OCoLC)880349839

Library Locations

    • Central LibraryBorrow it
      710 W. Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX, 78701, US
      30.2713021 -97.7460168
    • Twin Oaks BranchBorrow it
      1800 S. Fifth St., Austin, TX, 78704, US
      30.2486884 -97.76239749999999
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