Midwife's Apprentice

Updated
Midwife's Apprentice

Winner of the 1996 Newbery Medal

When I first met the protagonist in this medieval England village, I wasn't sure I wanted to know her. She literally stepped from a dung heap - not exactly the person you want to identify with. Day by day, though, she grows and risks and reaches to know herself and take all from life she can. Now, that's a person I want to know. Beetle is apprenticed to a nasty, old, piece-of-work midwife, and she pays attention, but has very little self-confidence at first acquaintance. You really do find yourself feeling as though you know what she's going through and you can smell the dung and feel the limits of her world. Hoping that she will triumph over her condition leads you on and on. It's just great. This book is the 1996 Newbery Medal winner.

144 pages 978-0547722177 Ages 9-12

Keywords: medieval times, apprentice, medieval England, girls and women, finding yourself, historical fiction, Newbery Medal, 9 year old, 10 year old, 11 year old, 12 year old

************* From the author of Catherine, Called Birdy comes another spellbinding novel set in medieval England. The girl known only as Brat has no family, no home, and no future until she meets Jane the Midwife and becomes her apprentice. As she helps the sharp-tempered Jane deliver babies, Brat--who renames herself Alyce--gains knowledge, confidence, and the courage to want something from life: "A full belly, a contented heart, and a place in this world." Medieval village life makes a lively backdrop for the funny, poignant story of how Alyce gets what she wants. A concluding note discusses midwifery past and present. A Newbery Medal book.---from the publisher

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