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Ratings and Reviews (2 5 star ratings
2 reviews

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3.8 out of 5
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  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    Interesting fictionalized history

    This was an interesting fiction novel from the year 1929. It centered around the textile workers and their efforts to try and form a union. Conditions were bad. Workers were paid $9.00 a week for six days of a 72 hour week. The mills were dangerous, the air filled with lint, breathed into a workers lungs, the machinery not safe and children being allowed to work and some losing fingers in the process. Ella worked hard to try and support her four living children, one had passed away. Her husband had ran off and left her and the children. The oldest, Lilly, watched the younger three while her mother worked the night shift. They lived in near hopeless poverty, in a shanty type community with very little food. Their bodies mere skin and bones. Organizing the union was Ella's way of trying to lift herself and others to a better life. Much resistance with violence ensued. The author wrote in such a way that you could easily picture the surroundings, feel the pain of the characters and pull for them to be successful in their strike. This brought about much violence as rallies and meetings were being held to educate workers on joining a union against the owners of the textile mills. I enjoyed the story and the characters, but I rated it four stars for two reasons. Each chapter or chapters was told first person from a wide range of the characters. You clearly knew which person's perspective was being told but it caused the story to be somewhat choppy in my opinion. The second reason was the language used in parts, although sporadic, it was offensive to me personally. Some it may not bother, but to me it did. Otherwise it made interesting reading about a period of history I knew little about. I received a complimentary ARC copy of this book from the author/publisher but was not required to write a review, positive or otherwise.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

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    The last ballad

    Unforgettable. Through this touching true story, perhaps we can get to understand Appalachia and its history and people more...

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