Chains – Laurie Halse AndersonChains is the first novel in the Seeds of America trilogy, a series of historical novels that follows the story of eleven- year- old Isabel, a Black American slave fighting for her and her younger sister's Ruth freedom while the Revolutionary War is occurring. The story sets in New York in the years to , when slavery was legal and common in the colonies. Though the novel is fictional, the events in the story are actual events that occurred back then in the colonies. Some examples of these events are the failed plan of George Washington's assassination followed by the hanging of one of the conspirators, the capture of Fort Washington , and the popular pamphlet Common Sense by Thomas Paine. The novel contains 45 chapters with the chapter numbers in Roman Numerals and the dates of the events in the chapter written right under the chapter number. Under the dates, Anderson has put in quotes from important documents at the time such as private letters, newspapers, the Common Sense pamphlet, the Declaration of Independence of the United States, and even spoken opinions from various country leaders. This opening of each chapter gives a perspective of what Isabel might face in the chapter or something relating to the events of the chapter.
Chains opens with a funeral, which pretty much tells us up front that it's going to be a pretty bleak story. Isabel, our heroine, and her younger sister, Ruth, are attending the burial of their owner, Miss Mary Finch. The occasion presents a great deal of hope for Isabel and Ruth, as Miss Finch planned to free the girls in her will. When Isabel confronts Miss Finch's brother about this, though, he basically thinks she's making it up. To make matters worse, her lawyer is stuck in Boston, where a major uprising has just taken place over the British colonies' desire for independence.
From acclaimed author Laurie Halse Anderson comes this compelling, impeccably researched novel that shows the lengths we can go to cast off our chains, both physical and spiritual. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions.
Laurie Halse Anderson is a New York Times bestselling author known for tackling tough subjects with humor and sensitivity. Her work has earned numerous ALA and state awards. Edwards Award. Mother of four and wife of one, Laurie lives in Pennsylvania, where she likes to watch the snow fall as she writes. Account Options Sign in.
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Share on:. Isabel and her sister Ruth are slaves. But they should be free - Miss Mary Finch left a will that said so. But Miss Mary Finch is dead and her greedy nephew and heir denies all knowledge of the will. The Revolutionary War is underway and New York is a dangerous place. The Locktons are loyalists, but the patriots are in control of the city.