Audacity by Melanie Crowder – Review by Vanessa Capaldo

Nerdy Book Club

audacityI will admit, when I picked up this book and saw the free verse format it was written in, I thought, “Ugh, how can this serious subject be conveyed in this form?”

I am pleased to say that this format made the story more real, more beautiful and heartbreaking to me. Crowder’s words are haunting, yet hopeful.

Inspired by the real life story of Clara Lemlich, a young Russian Jewish immigrant who emigrated to New York City at the turn of the 20th century, Clara arrives with her mother, father, and two brothers, having fled their native Russia to escape the rampant antisemitism for the freedom and opportunity that America offers.

Clara longs to be educated and read books, but is not allowed to learn or read as in her native country, girls are not expected, or allowed, to be educated. Her brothers are allowed to read and learn…

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