The book adheres to a white default: None of the characters are identified by race in the text, though Freddy and librarian Leona are illustrated with dark skin; gloomy Mr. Elizabeth is an appealing heroine, fond of reading and puzzles, confident in her intelligence, but she grapples with her temper and emotions and worries about fitting in at school or among people in general. Though Elizabeth counts Leona among her friends, the cast is male, with the only other primary female characters fairly unlikable.
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The Secrets of Winterhouse
Log In. Toggle navigation MENU. Email Address. An engaging blend of sleuthing, puzzle-solving, and magic. Review Posted Online: Oct.
As the story begins, the father sells his store to the newcomer, who, much weakened from his ordeal, hardly notices as the man includes Rosehannah in the deal. The father hastily marries Rosehannah to the stranger so he can depart with a freer conscience now that his only child step-child, actually has a husband to care for her. McGrath commands an awesome knowledge of fishing and boating, berries of the woods, how to skin and roast a variety of wild and domestic birds, and such diverse skills as snowshoeing, crafting metal objects in a home-made forge, and salting fish and game.
To all of this she adds a dollop of humanity as she paints the various families on the island who live in a necessary symbiosis with each other. Sociability, neighbourliness and tolerance are not just expected; they are mandatory.
All in all, it seems an astonishingly authentic portrait of a rustic community, comparable, say, to A. The Winterhouse is an impressive book that will appeal to patient readers willing to take the time to let a good book win them over.