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Mable Riley: A Reliable Record of Humdrum,…
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Mable Riley: A Reliable Record of Humdrum, Peril, and Romance

by Marthe Jocelyn

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Set in turn of the century Perth County, Ontario (circa 1901), this story is a lovely coming of age story as 14 year old Mable moves with her older sister Viola as Viola becomes the new school mistress for a small town some distance from their own home. Mable learns the controlling forces in the new community and about the struggle women of the time period were facing when trying to obtain fair work conditions and a fair voice in matters.

Jocelyn developed the feel and flavour of her story after reading two of her grandmother's diaries which were found in the attic of her grandmother's house some 100 year after they had been written. As this one is told from the point of view of a 14 year old and probably geared towards a younger reading audience, the issues raised in the story are touched upon but not delved into in great detail as some readers may expect.

Overall, this was a charming story told by Mable through her journal entries, newspaper excerpts of note and Mable's own attempts to write poetry and a serial story of adventure, peril and romance Mable sends to her friend, Hattie. It captures rural/ small town life of the period nicely, when the telephone was very much a new thing and women wearing bloomers and riding bicycles were viewed as a shocking spectacle. ( )
  lkernagh | Jun 17, 2013 |
Mable accompanies her sister to her new little town to start her first job as a schoolteacher in 1901. Mable will be a student and an assistant. Life in the little town is about to get more interesting! Mable's diary reveals her thoughts on leaving home, on making new friends, on her relationship with her bossy big sister, her beginnings at romance, and her budding interest in women's rights. Lots of fun and easy to read. ( )
  cmbohn | Aug 15, 2010 |
When her sister Viola takes a position as a school teacher in a distant Ontario County, thirteen-year-old Mabel Riley goes along to help with the younger students. Living with the Goodhand family, and feeling somewhat estranged from her suddenly adult-acting sister, Mabel dreams of growing up to be a writer and traveling the world. She's fascinated by the scandalous, possibly widowed Mrs. Rattle, who wears bloomers, rides a bicycle, and has "indecent" opinions.

Set in a time when the woman's rights movement was just getting underway, telephones were regarded with suspicion, marriage ended a woman's career, and divorce was a shame and a scandal, Mabel has a difficult time with her desire to be something more than a wife and a mother. Mabel is an entertaining character, and the Canadian setting makes a refreshing change. ( )
2 vote SunnySD | Jan 3, 2009 |
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Friday, August 30 1901

Such a long day of travel we have had before arriving here!
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
It’s the year 1901, and fourteen-year-old aspiring writer Mable Riley is on her way to fulfilling her dreams, or so she hopes. She’s sure that moving with her sister to a faraway town will bring adventures full of peril and romance to write about!

At first, it seems that life in the new town is as humdrum as the one she left behind. But then Mable meets a real writer, one who wears daring fashions and enjoys shocking the townsfolk by sharing her opinions. And Mrs. Rattle has a few shocking secrets as well, including a dangerous plan that may soon bring Mable more peril and romance than she bargained for!

Designed as a vintage journal including diary entries, letters, poems, and Mable’s own "Romantic Novel," MABLE RILEY is a reliable record of a young girl’s coming of age at a time of women’s early struggles for independence - a charmingly told tale that is as funny as it is inspiring.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 076362120X, Hardcover)

In the spirit of ANNE OF GREEN GABLES comes this delightful turn-of-the-century journal of a feisty, imaginative young girl who is finding her voice and the courage to make it heard.

It’s the year 1901, and fourteen-year-old aspiring writer Mable Riley is on her way to fulfilling her dreams, or so she hopes. She’s sure that moving with her sister to a faraway town will bring adventures full of peril and romance to write about! At first, it seems that life in the new town is as humdrum as the one she left behind. But then Mable meets a real writer, one who wears daring fashions and enjoys shocking the townsfolk by sharing her opinions. And Mrs. Rattle has a few shocking secrets as well, including a dangerous plan that may soon bring Mable more peril and romance than she bargained for! Designed as a vintage journal including diary entries, letters, poems, and Mable’s own "Romantic Novel," MABLE RILEY is a reliable record of a young girl’s coming of age at a time of women’s early struggles for independence - a charmingly told tale that is as funny as it is inspiring.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:51:22 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

In 1901, fourteen-year-old Mable Riley dreams of being a writer and having adventures while stuck in Perth County, Ontario, assisting her sister in teaching school and secretly becoming friends with a neighbor who holds scandalous opinions on women's rights.… (more)

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Candlewick Press

Two editions of this book were published by Candlewick Press.

Editions: 076362120X, 0763632872

Tundra Books

Three editions of this book were published by Tundra Books.

Editions: 0887766633, 0887767672, 0887768261

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