Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Deadly by Julie Chibbaro

DeadlySuperb YA historical novel. It's narrated in the first person POV, like she is writing in a journal. The heroine is a young lady, Prudence, in NYC, 1906. Prudence has a fascination with death.. she wishes she could stop it. She has lost her brother and her father and watched countless women die in childbirth.

Her mother forces her to attend a school for future ladies type thing, but Prudence has bigger plans. She goes to work for the Department of Sanitation. First case: typhoid epidemic. What's causing all these families to become so ill and possibly die?

And thus, through Prudence's eyes, readers learn about Typhoid Mary, an Irish immigrant who left a typhoid trail in her wake. Every family she cooked for became seriously ill.. even though Mary herself never got sick. Strange! Something to do with red blood cells maybe? 

I was seriously fascinated by this.. the early days of science, of medical study, of a young girl wanting to be a doctor in a time when women just didn't do that... I found myself having an inner debate.. Should Typhoid Mary be quarantined? Is this fair to her? What about others? Because though I seen a walking disease carrier, like Prudence, I also seen a human being... 

On top of all of that, Prudence is feeling the early stirrings of puppy love, dealing with her mother possibly dating again, and finding out the truth of her father as well as fending off the unwelcome advances of a suitor of her own. 

Absolutely fabulous read. Highly recommended, 5 stars. 

This was a library book. 

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