Book Club Selection
Laura's imagined romantic life detracted from the interest in this story.
Suitable for teens and book groups.
After a bout of scarlet fever deprives two-year-old Laura Bridgman of four of her five senses, she finds an unlikely advocate in Dr. Samuel Gridley Howe, founder of the Perkins Institute. Under Dr. Howe's tutelage, Laura learns to communicate with her hands, becoming a celebrity in the process. But communication is not the same as connection. Despite her fame - even Charles Dickens writes an essay about her - Laura struggles with loneliness and feelings of abandonment as important people in her life come and go, many using her to further their own agendas. Although the real-life Laura Bridgman was born decades before the more famous Helen Keller, fans of the latter's memoir, The Story of My Life, will want to read this moving novel about a woman who succeeded on her own terms and challenged conventional beliefs concerning what was possible for individuals with disabilities.
Historical Fiction July 2014 Newsletter.
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