Among the poverty stricken families living in the Lower East Side during the 1900s is Essie, her mother and siblings. Essie has a talent for making beautiful hats, but that doesn't bring in enough to survive so she takes a job at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory. The factory is a place for Essie to get away from her everyday life, especially after a tragic accident takes someone very important from her life. At the factory, she befriends Harriet, an upper class girl who left her old life behind to work at the Shirtwaist Factory. As she tries to get her life in control, it's the tragic accident at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory helps her to face what she has been avoiding for a long time.
I thought that this novel was captivating and had a great plot. There aren't many teen novels that use the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire as a backdrop, and Davies weaves that with the mysterious disappearance of an upper class heiress at around the same time. The two stories tie together in a successful way and once I started reading, it was hard to put the book down. The characters were well developed and it was hard not to care for them. I would recommend this novel to any fans of historical fiction or anyone looking for a good read.
Reviewer City, State and Country: Philadelphia, PA United States