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Fever, 1793 > Fever, 1793

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message 1: by Diane (new)

Diane (dianders1) | 136 comments Mod
I've reserved copies of Fever, 1793 and I'll be passing out the books around the 20th this month. I can pass them out, or you guys can call.

We'll be doing online posts for the reading, but we'll also do in-person discussions at the end of each book.

message 2: by Susan (new)

Susan | 8 comments Sounds great to me. Thanks for putting this together Diane!

message 3: by Sue (new)

Sue | 12 comments Diane I read your review of the book. Even though it was a YA novel I was glad for the quick read. I read it the first morning of the break. I too had never heard of the fever outbreak in Philadelphia. That was so interesting and also heart wrenching to me. I often have tons of questions at the end of historical books and it was nice to have many of those questions answered at the end of the book.

message 4: by Tisha (new)

Tisha (tishafinlay) | 11 comments Sounds great, thanks for the copy already Diane!

message 5: by Holly (new)

Holly (HHarvey) | 14 comments I finished it last night

message 6: by Emily (new)

Emily | 39 comments I finished it early this morning.

message 7: by Kate (new)

Kate | 15 comments I finished yesterday. Ready any day to discuss. Thanks again Diane.

message 8: by Diane (new)

Diane (dianders1) | 136 comments Mod
Okay! Let's get it going! So what did you all think? First off, had you ever heard of the yellow fever outbreak before?

message 9: by Holly (new)

Holly (HHarvey) | 14 comments I had not heard of this outbreak. I liked the various notes at the back of the book, but still wanted to know a bit more so I hit the internet to read up a bit.

I found that the description of the lawlessness reminded me of the news stories during the time of hurricane Katrina. I remember reports of looting and more and contemplated then how quickly humans descended below acceptable and expected behaviors.

I loved the bit where the flowers were being tossed out the window to catch our heroine's attention!

message 10: by Diane (new)

Diane (dianders1) | 136 comments Mod
I did too! I know she was only 14, but I guess that wasn't that young back then. I thought the whole romantic subplot was very sweet. And I loved the relationship between Mattie and Eliza. I wonder how realistic that is, though. Even though there were free blacks at the time, I wonder how equal the relationships would be between whites and blacks.

message 11: by Sue (new)

Sue | 12 comments I had not heard of it either and was surprised at the relatively short time it took to result in such devastation!!! I thought the part where Eliza was angry at the people who had left and that they seemed so oblivious to all that had gone on also interesting. It is so true in life even now that we can feel so removed from horrible situations unless they touch our lives personally. As far as the Mattie and Eliza relationship goes...we hear so much about horrible black/white relationships from the South and hear very little about how things were going in the North. I wonder how it really was for freed blacks . The information at the back of the book suggests that even though the Free African Society did much during the epidemic they were still maligned by some. I like to think that even back then there were people who believed that a person was a person no matter what. At least I hope so!

message 12: by Kate (new)

Kate | 15 comments I too was shocked to realize that people often abandon each other in times of extreme fear. I wonder if similar things could happen now-Katrina makes me think the answer would be yes. I was totally enthralled by the book though. The romantic subplot was sweet. I could really feel Mattie's anxiety and fear. I thought she shouldered her responsibility very well. You can see why they grew up so quickly. I told my husband, a nurse, about the book after I read it and he too was skeptical about some of the details. So I did a little research. The details in the book seem to be very factually based. There are many accounts of the infected being throw in the street by their own families, without even a drink of water. A mansion, Bush Hill, was converted into a hospital for the sick. (The owner was a little upset when he came back into town, but the government worked out compensation later). Landlords and farmers were definitely guilty of price gouging. Black nurses outnumbered white nurses by far. And the mayor printed a statement in the paper thanking the Free African Society for their services. They saved countless numbers of people, cared for orphans and offered comfort to dieing people all over the city. The went door to door and witnessed terrible atrocities. The mayor also warned people to treat them with respect. It's hard to believe people were harassing them when they seemed to be the only organized force working for good. I am grateful to live at a time when I don't have to have my sickness bled out of me. Hold the mercury.

message 13: by Tisha (new)

Tisha (tishafinlay) | 11 comments I too enjoyed this book; a great read. I did know about the Yellow Fever Outbreak, but had no idea of any of the details. It broke my heart to see the instant change and fear that took over the town. To see how humans can react out of fear makes me wonder what I would have done in a similar situation. I don't think I would have left my family to die if they contracted the fever, but would I leave my home? I loved the character of Maddie. Learning what she found in herself from child to woman and deciding what she had to do. Overall I felt the read was very worthwhile and would definitely recommend it in the future.

message 14: by Diane (new)

Diane (dianders1) | 136 comments Mod
Well, it seems to have quieted down quite a bit. If no one has anything else to add, we can close this discussion. Good book, not a lot to talk about.

You can either return your copies to the library yourself, or drop them off with me. They are due Feb. 26.


message 15: by Emily (new)

Emily | 39 comments I think that anything I would have added has been touched on. Looking forward to the next book!

message 16: by Susan (new)

Susan | 8 comments I'm sorry I haven't been joining in on this. I just got to read it this weekend. I'll take my copy back to the library.
Can't wait for the next one.

message 17: by Kate (new)

Kate | 15 comments So what did you think Susan?

message 18: by Susan (new)

Susan | 8 comments I thought it was interesting. Not too substantial, and the writing was pretty simple, but an interesting topic. I too had not heard about this outbreak, I liked having the quotes from real people at the beginning of each chapter.

Don't get me wrong, I like the light stuff just as well as the heavier stuff.

message 19: by Diane (new)

Diane (dianders1) | 136 comments Mod
There is still one copy of Fever that hasn't been returned yet. It is due on Feb. 26. I'll be happy to pick it up if whoever has it can't get by the library.


message 20: by Susan (new)

Susan | 8 comments I have it. Elizabeth wanted to read it too. I will return it on Monday.
Thanks, Susan

Diane wrote: "There is still one copy of Fever that hasn't been returned yet. It is due on Feb. 26. I'll be happy to pick it up if whoever has it can't get by the library.


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