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    A heartbreaking story

    The Child from the Ash Pits by Chrissie Walsh takes us back in time to 1926. Cally Manfield is nine years old when her mother passes away and her life changes forever. The Child from the Ash Pits takes us from 1926 through the end of World War II. Despite her humble beginnings, Cally was determined to get ahead. There were numerous obstacles put in her path. Cally had a horrible stepmother who intensely disliked her and a father who failed to stand up for her. She is intelligent and worked diligently on her studies. Cally is tested throughout her whole life, but she perseveres thanks to her strength and determination. A saying of her mother’s guides Cally. It is “Happiness doesn’t find you; you make your own.” The beginning is incredibly heartbreaking (have a box of tissues nearby). We get to see what it was like living in the shadow of the mines. The air, the filth, and the incredible danger. I found The Child from the Ash Pits to be well-written and the story moved along at an even pace. The characters were developed and suited the time period. I thought the author captured what it was like to live during this era. I do want to let readers know that there is violence in the story along with foul language (a sprinkling). The Child from the Ash Pits is a story that will linger with you long after you finish it. The Child from the Ash Pits is a heart-rending tale with coal calamities, flashy floozies, handsy humans, terrible travesties, and a sympathetic soul.

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