City of Grit and Gold
The streets of Chicago in 1886 are full of turmoil. Striking workers clash with police…illness and injury lurk around every corner…and twelve-year-old Addie must find her way through it all. Torn between her gruff Papa—who owns a hat shop and thinks the workers should be content with their American lives—and her beloved Uncle Chaim—who is active in the protests for the eight-hour day—Addie struggles to understand her topsy-turvy world, while keeping her family intact. Set in a Jewish neighborhood of Chicago during the days surrounding the Haymarket Affair, this novel vividly portrays one immigrant family’s experience, while also eloquently depicting the timeless conflict between the haves and the have-nots.
Praise for City of Grit and Gold
“Powell brings this historical event to life with admirable attention to detail. A well-rounded collection of characters offer opposing perspectives of the events and life in Chicago at that time. Young readers will grow along with Addie as she learns about the hardships of poverty and the complexity of politics…A timely and potent portrait of an important moment in U.S. history. Recommended for fans of ‘Dear America.’” —School Library Journal
“The history of the American Labor Movement isn’t often explored in middle-grade literature, and this will be a valuable addition to collections…Exploring many topical issues—immigration, civil disobedience, the right to free speech and assembly, and police brutality—this novel is timely. Kudos to the small Chicago press, Allium, for bringing it out; it certainly deserves a place in most libraries.” —Booklist
“City of Grit and Gold is an ideal pick for teachers and librarians who may want to use the work to supplement lessons on American history or have meaningful discussions about rights, immigration, and protesting.” —Foreword Reviews
“A worthy introduction to an important piece of history.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Sensitive and beautifully told, City of Grit and Gold captures the 19th-century immigrant experience with its hopes and sorrows. Young readers will find much to compare with today’s refugee crisis as they identify with its resourceful and brave heroine.” —Historical Novels Review