Sweet Home Alaska
Terpsichore’s family has been hit hard by the Depression. Pop’s job is gone and there are no others for him or others in their small Wisconsin town. When FDR offers lands and loans in Matanuska Valley, Alaska, to families like the Johnsons, Pop wants to go. They start this great adventure with the caveat that Mother can decide whether or not they will stay after their second harvest in Alaska. The young village grows in the valley with a lot of enthusiastic people and a few bumps along the way such as buildings taking long to be built and a doctor and hospital coming late. But Terpsichore makes friends and learns to love her new home, as do her sisters but Mother misses her own mother and the piano they couldn’t bring. The fear is Mother will vote to leave, but Terpsichore has an idea to change Mother’s mind.
Based on real happenings, this engaging novel is filled with charming characters and a very compelling story set in a time and place readers will find fascinating. Author Carole Estby Dagg’s excellent research shows as does her talent for creating believable scenarios and dialogue.
This deserves wider readership than middle-graders.
Nancy Paulsen Books
Carole Estby Dagg