Amanda Denney is a historical fiction novelist and poet. In addition to literary essays and journalism articles, she writes historical and realistic fiction in English and Spanish, short stories and novelettes of various genres, and free verse poetry. Her interest in writing came from her deep love of books, which she has devoured several at a time for her entire childhood, and the study of Romantic poetry and a trip to London inspired what would eventually become her debut novel, Sweepings of the Street. Amanda is from Massachusetts and now lives in Saratoga Springs, New York. She can be found drawing, practicing one of her four instruments, memorizing lines for multiple shows at once, typing furiously on her laptop as she tries to replicate the speed of her thoughts, or reading a book wherever she is.
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Twelve-year-old Sarah Lee longs to remain in the golden fields under a starry sky forever, but life has other plans for her. After the bleak spring of 1816 yields meager crops, Sarah’s family flees its home in the English countryside to labor at a textile factory in newly industrial London. A factory accident several months later leaves Sarah’s father out of work and her family desperate for money. Despite the worries of her older brother Thomas, Sarah disguises herself and ventures into a dangerous new job.
Sarah soon learns that life in London is not as simple as it seems. She meets Jamie, a sullen, aggressive boy who helps her adjust to the new conditions. But Jamie has dark secrets of his own, and his reluctance to trust strangers clashes with Sarah’s burning curiosity about his past. As the city creeps towards winter, Sarah and her friends stand face-to-face with the horrors of London poverty—rising prices, rampant crime, disease, and hopelessness—and it becomes clear that not everyone will make it out alive. Everyone has a secret, and the consequences can be more devastating than any of them can imagine.
Set in Regency-era England, this coming-of-age novel delves into the effects of poverty, child labor, exploitation, grief, depression, loss of innocence, and premature responsibility on children and families. Sweepings of the Street delivers a powerful, timeless story against a rapidly changing historical backdrop.
Sweepings of the Street
A powerful, timeless story against a rapidly changing historical backdrop.
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