Friday, April 07, 2006
Catherine, Called Birdy - Karen Cushman [March/06]
I was at a store that sells very cheap books and came across this YA novel by Karen Cushman and decided to give it a try. I especially liked it for the saying on the front: "She's not your average damsel in distress...". Take that saying and couple it with the picture on the cover and you know that you are in for an entertaining read. It is also a Newbery Honor book, so other people enjoyed it as well.
It is a very simple premise behind this novel. It is about a young girl at her marriagable age who feels trapped by the time that she is living in. Her father is determined to have her married off and Catherine does not wish to be married to whatever man comes her way. Her father is just looking for a man of means so as to better influence the family and its funds. Catherine is not for this idea, though, and so she uses every trick in the book to send her would-be husbands back to whence they came without her hand in marriage. They generally go quite willingly when she is done with them.
Catherine might have met her match, though, when the ugliest and oldest of her would-be suitors comes to call. He is also the richest so far and the one that her father is the most determined for her to marry. Catherine is not a girl to wait around for whatever her father plans for her, she attempts to take matters into her own hands. She may have met her match with this one, though, as he is not as easy to remove as the others that she has encountered. Will she win out in the end? You will just have to read the book to see if she retains her winning streak. What you can know is that Catherine uses her diary to show us readers that she was a woman of her time, so whoever got her in the end was in for quite an experience.