The Great Depression: A Young Girl's Story by James Riordan
  

Synopsis

The Great Depression: A Young Girl's Story by James Riordan

It's 1930s America and the Depression has ripped the nation apart. Poverty is rife and families are starving. Fourteen-year-old Molly has no one to rely on but herself. She has to find work - any work. But with millions of people unemployed the competition for jobs is stiff, and the only way to find work is to travel. Riding the freight trains in search of a square meal, Molly sees the misery of the Depression at first hand. Part of a unique collection of fictional stories about young people caught up in real-life conflicts and disasters. Through their eyes we experience the day-to-day hardships and dangers of living through troubled times from throughout history.

About the Author

James Riordan

James Riordan ( 10 October 1936 - 10 February 2012) grew up during the war in his chimney-sweep grandfather’s house in Portsmouth. After school he was a barman, waiter, railway clerk, commercial salesman, and dance band musician. During his National Service in the RAF he learned Russian and went on to become Professor of Russian Studies at Surrey University. Besides novels, he has written folk-tale collections, picture books and over 20 academic publications. His first novel for children, Sweet Clarinet, was shortlisted for the Whitbread Children’s Book Award and, like his other novels The Prisoner and When the Guns Fall Silent, is based partly on his own wartime experiences.

Riordan then produced a steady flow of anthologies of various kinds from across Russia and its near neighbours, acting as both collector and translator. He also diversified into other folk-story traditions, including The 12 Labours of Hercules (1998), which won the UK Reading Association award. His collection The Woman in the Moon and Other Tales of Forgotten Heroines (1985), including stories from Japan, Ghana, Sicily, Lapland and the UK, was celebrated for its strong female characters.

Breaking away from other people's stories, he wrote his first novel, Sweet Clarinet (1998), the touching story of a boy overcoming injuries sustained in the London Blitz through his love of playing music. Nine more novels followed; all have something of the folk tale about them in terms of a child overcoming adversity through courage and belief. Many, such as Rebel Cargo (2007), the story of children sold into slavery and his final novel, Blood Runner (2011), the story of a young black boy whose parents are killed by the South African police, carry strong socio-political messages. Russia never lost its appeal as a source of stories for him and he returned there with the setting of his penultimate novel, The Sniper (2008), which is based on the true story of a teenage marksman at the siege of Stalingrad.

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Other Formats

Book Info

Format

Paperback
96 pages
Interest Age: From 9

Author

James Riordan
More books by James Riordan

Publisher

Publication date

26th November 2015

ISBN

9780750296304


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