The Yohahlossee Riding Camp for Girls

The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls

by Anton Disclafani

Judy Stanton (06/21/13): Thea Atwell, a 15 year old girl from Florida, who lives a sheltered life, is sent away by her parents to a "riding camp" for girls after a mysterious transgression, which slowly, and compellingly, unfolds in this story. Set in the 1930s, it recalls a time when Southern girls dressed for dinner, had coming out parties, and were brought up to marry a young man often chosen by their parents. I admit I was drawn back to the book to read what would happen to Thea, but I didn't love the story. The depression of the 30s was only brought to bear when a girl at the "camp" was impacted by a turn in her family's fortune; I would have liked more. I think I also had a hard time relating to a family living on a farm, so isolated from people, that Thea and her twin Sam were never exposed to other children their age, and her mother, who had a great love of home, would keep her family so sheltered. The book is well written, hopping back and forth from Thea's life at camp and life on the farm, with easy transition and unfolding of the story. 3+ Rating: ***+

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