I just finished reading Lyddie by Katherine Paterson for a youth services course in library science. This is the first book I've read in years that I've not wanted to put down - nor did I want it to end! This is a historical novel about three years in the life of Lyddie, a 13 year old girl in New England, between 1843 and 1846. She is a strong and determined heroine who discovers a new life through reading. Along the way she suffers family hardships, faces her own morality when she encounters a runaway slave, is put in morally compromising positions and finds work as a mill girl in Lowell. The language is not only wonderful and challenging for younger readers; Paterson can really tell a story.