Lyddie (Puffin Modern Classics)
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Lyddie (Puffin Modern Classics)

3.57 of 5 stars 3.57  ·  rating details  ·  3,281 ratings  ·  257 reviews
"Rich in historical detail...a superb story of grit, determination, and personal growth."—The Horn Book,starred review

When ten-year-old Lyddie and her younger brother are hired out as servants to help pay off their family farm's debts, Lyddie is determined to find a way to reunite her family. Hearing about all the money a girl can make working in the textile mills in Lowe...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published September 23rd 2004 by Puffin (first published January 1st 1991)
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Summary: Impoverished Vermont, farm girl Lyddie Worthen is determined to gain her independence by becoming a factory worker in Lowell, Massachusetts, in the 1840s.

Oh, my heart ached for Lyddie and the circumstances that made her life. But I know, Lyddie will achieve all that she had planned/intend to do in the last part of the book. :-;

The story gripped me from the start. Despite the obvious physical tension (i.e. bear), the author managed to incorporate humour in this, and at the same time re...more
Man Man (superhero)
May 28, 2008 Man Man (superhero) rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
Recommended to Man Man by: no one
lyddie sucked, dont bother readin it. so gay.its about working on a loom.
Lyddie, by Katherine Paterson

"Lyddie" is a book from my childhood, one that I read so many times the binding was falling apart. I still like to reread it from time to time, simply because I enjoy the story of a girl's fight to become independent. "Lyddie" also introduced me to the Lowell mills, a period of history I'd known nothing about before and has since become a subject I wish to learn more about.

Lyddie is an inspiring character; in spite of overwhelming odds, she manages to find a measure...more
Kathy Roderer
Katherine Paterson is masterful in creating vividly real characterization in this book. It seems that the reader knows Lyddie personally. Far from being perfect, Lyddie is tough, ambitious, independent and knows how to work. After fighting off a bear, Lyddie is orphaned and then separated from her siblings. The time and place are Lowell textile factories in Massachusetts. In desperation, Lyddie becomes one of the factory girls. Some background education about the textile mills would be helpful i...more
Kendall M
I thought this book in a way was a little posessed. I thought it was posessed because the way the head keeper tried to rape the teenage girls and then when his boss found out he denied it and got Lyddie fired. Other than that though this book was okay. I really loved the deatail. How the author described the conditions they were working in were very well, and what the girls from Ireland were wearing. Lyddie had a very difficult life. From the time her mother went crazy to the time she left the h...more
At thirteen, Lyddie's life changes when her unstable mother divides the family, leaving with her youngest two children to live with her sister. Lyddie and brother Charlie are left on their own to work and pay off unspecified debts incurred by the family. Lyddie is determined to earn enough money to reunite her family.

I really enjoyed this book, and in particular, Patterson's portrayal of Lyddie's personality/voice/narration made the book engrossing. It's a coming of age story that tracks her pat...more
This was really a 3 1/2 star book for me.

Pros: This book was refreshingly gritty for a young adult book, especially in terms of Lyddie's own shortcomings. I really enjoyed the how Lyddie was reading "Oliver Twist" in the book and elements of her own life were mirrored there.

Cons: The end was unrealistic and disappointing for me and the whole book felt a little too much like Paterson set out to describe life in 19th century New England rather than being truly story driven. For example, the descr...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
this book is worse than my truck tires(they are totally dry rotted)
Quinn Rollins
The factories of Lowell were a great economic and social experiment of sorts in the mid-1800s. Some of the first factories in the U.S. to use the real factory system, the textile mills used single girls and women as workers. This meant the factories could pay them less than they would men, but it also provided an unusual opportunity for these girls--they could earn money honorably, and use it for themselves or their families, and gain some measure of economic independence. It was a fascinating e...more

Read it in 6th grade, and our teacher was convinced that everybody would like it because the main character was from Vermont. :\

So anyway, it's about this chick whose father dies and her family falls to pieces. Her mother's gone crazy, and they're all poor. She gets a low-paying job at a tavern, but quickly learns that that will not suffice. So, she runs off to Massachusetts (spelling?) and gets a job behind a loom. That goes better, and she makes some friends.
The rest of this r...more
Landon Lundquist
This book is not for me or my liking. i kinda knew that this was not the kind of book for me. But i read it anyway. This is a historical fiction book. i don't like historical fiction. Lyddie is a little girl whose parents and her brothers left her, she was all alone. she worked all day long by herself. I am probably not going read any more historical fiction books like this one any more. Lyddie's dad left her and her mother for the gold rush she or her mom do not know when he will return.
one day...more
An interesting story about a plucky young girl, Lyddie Worthen. In her father's physical absence, and her mother's mental absence, Lyddie and her younger brother Charles do all the work of parenting and providing for their two younger sisters. When a bear raids their farm, Lyddie's mother decides to go live at her sister's house with the two girls, leaving Lyddie and Charles to fight the winter alone. Lyddie and Charles work hard all the long winter and finally have the farm in a productive stat...more
Melody Savage
Paterson's honest yet tasteful approach to difficult realities such as poverty, death, and licentious behavior are to be admired. She gives the ugly outlines of the problems with just enough details help us understand, yet not so much filth as to remove the focus from Lyddie's courage: "He was bringing his strange little mouth closer and closer to her fiery face....she raised her booted foot and stomped her heel down with all her might." We understand the problem, but are spared the full exposur...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I really enjoyed this book the second time around, although I can see how kids might be really bored with this. It's about a young girl from Vermont whose family farm must be leased out in order to pay off a family debt. To get the farm back quickly, Lyddie decides to go work in the Lowell textile mills of the 1840's. Life there is terrible, but she earns lots of money. Problems ensue.

What attracted me to it was using the book to teach my students about the struggles people have gone through thr...more
Jan 21, 2010 Shinynickel marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Off Wealhtheow:

Seeking a way out of the desperate poverty her family lives in, young Lyddie gets a job at one of the newly opened mills. A really fantastic way to get children to understand labor laws, unions, and the industrial revolution.
Julia Kuntz
It started out a little boring but as I kept reading, it got better and better. This is not just a story about working on a loom. It is a story about a young woman growing up and trying to find her way in the world.
When I was in college, I took a children's literature course. We had to read 30 books that semester... 15 chapter books and 15 picture books, as well as a selection of poems. We could choose whatever books we wanted. Somehow, I found Lyddie and I loved it!

Here is what I wrote, my sophomore year of college (10 years ago! Ahh!), about Lyddie: Lyddie was a wonderful book about a girl that was determined like no other person I have ever heard of. Lyddie knew what she wanted and never stopped working...more
Historically interesting, but rather prurient book about nasty mill owners groping pubescent female mill workers.
Love Katherine Paterson, but this wasn't my favorite.
Spivak may i ask where the romance in this is?
shhhh I'm reading!!!lol
Though Lyddie was an impressively strong character, I was disappointed that she did not get more involved in the labor reform movement. Why wasn't she more active?
This book was also depressing and it ended in a very awkward place that left me very dissatisfied. I would have enjoyed it more if it had ended in a different place and with a little more hope for a better life.
I don't think I would bother reading this sad tale again. The writing was good and the plot was strong. But way too depressi...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Interesting little book about a girl who goes to work in the textile mills of Lowell, Massachusetts, in the mid 1800s. Abandoned by her father, and also by her mother, Lyddie and her younger brother Charlie take care of the family farm for a year, even though she's only 13. Then her mother arranges for Lyddie and her brother to be apprenticed to different businesses to pay off the debt on the farm. Eventually Lyddie decides to become a factory girl, to earn more money and pay off the debt more q...more
I really wish I had read this when I was in middle school because I know I would have loved it. Anyone who enjoyed books like Catherine, Called Birdy and A Picture of Freedom: The Diary of Clotee, a Slave Girl, Belmont Plantation, Virginia 1859 would love Lyddie. The main character Lyddie is a Vermont girl who is struggling to support her family on their farm after her father leaves to find better work. When a bear breaks into their little cabin, Lyddie and her family are separated and sent off...more
This is the story of Lyddie, a young girl who takes over the responsibility for taking care of her family after her father leaves to find work and her mother leaves mentally. The story begins with her saving the family from a bear that enters their home, and she faces more and more "bears" throughout the story. Her mother takes her two little sisters to go live with family, and Lyddie and her brother are eventually sent to work off the family debts. Lyddie learns of greater money opportunities a...more
Alison 710
****some spoilers****
I loved this book. It doesn't really end with a solution though.
Lyddie, the main character has a really strong personality. She accepts the fact that her and her brother will have to leave their home and work hard to get rid of her father's debts. She goes through a lot of family crisis and issues in addition to the debt. Her dad runs away when she is little, her mom and some siblings die, and then is left to take care of a 6-yr old girl and work a 13-14 hour shift at the...more
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From author's website:

People are always asking me questions I don't have answers for. One is, "When did you first know that you wanted to become a writer?" The fact is that I never wanted to be a writer, at least not when I was a child, or even a young woman. Today I want very much to be a writer. But when I was ten, I wanted to be either a movie star or a missionary. When I was twenty, I wanted t...more
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“My heart is heavy, she thought. It’s not just a saying. It is what is—heavy, a great stone lodged in my breast, pressing down my whole being. How can I even stand straight and look out upon the world? I am doubled over into myself and, for all the weight, find only emptiness.” 17 likes
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