Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Modern Girls
by Jennifer S Brown

Publisher: NAL
Pages: 384
Format: ARC
Buy the Book: Amazon 

Goodreads:  How was it that out of all the girls in the office, I was the one to find myself in this situation? This didn’t happen to nice Jewish girls.

In 1935, Dottie Krasinsky is the epitome of the modern girl. A bookkeeper in Midtown Manhattan, Dottie steals kisses from her steady beau, meets her girlfriends for drinks, and eyes the latest fashions. Yet at heart, she is a dutiful daughter, living with her Yiddish-speaking parents on the Lower East Side. So when, after a single careless night, she finds herself in a family way by a charismatic but unsuitable man, she is desperate: unwed, unsure, and running out of options.

After the birth of five children—and twenty years as a housewife—Dottie’s immigrant mother, Rose, is itching to return to the social activism she embraced as a young woman. With strikes and breadlines at home and National Socialism rising in Europe, there is much more important work to do than cooking and cleaning. So when she realizes that she, too, is pregnant, she struggles to reconcile her longings with her faith.

As mother and daughter wrestle with unthinkable choices, they are forced to confront their beliefs, the changing world, and the fact that their lives will never again be the same….
 


Kritters Thoughts:  Two women, a mother and a daughter, both find themselves pregnant and both are not happy about it.  One is a single woman with a lot of ahead of her and the mother has had her share of children and is ready for the next stage in her life and a baby isn't in her definition of the future.  

I loved seeing a mother and daughter dealing with the same "issue" and see how each solves it.  It was interesting to read a mother daughter relationship when they are both in a similar boat.  I also loved that both mother and daughter were given the opportunity to tell their story from their own eyes - I LOVE a dual narrative!  

Taking in mind that this is historical fiction at a time when women were nothing without a man "to take care of them", this book would have been so different if it took place now.  I am glad it is historical and also includes the heritage piece that as a Jew living in New York in this time was also hard.  I wonder how differently this book could be if the characters came from a different country or a different religion - would they have come about their pregnancies with different viewpoints?  My answer - I am not sure because although in this book their being Jewish was significant, I think all women at their specific ages would have reacted to the pregnancies in the same way and may have "solved" them in the same way.  Something to think about!

This was a fantastic book from a debut author and I would have to say, and maybe prematurely, that Jennifer S Brown could go on my auto buy after this one!


Rating: absolutely loved it and want a sequel

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Berkley NAL.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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