Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Betsy and the Great World by Maud Hart Lovelace

Betsy is 21 and embarking on a European trip to help her learn to become a better writer and to help her with the heartbreak of her broken relationship with Joe Willard.  Betsy experiences life in a variety of European cities and learns about heartbreak and what she really wants out of life.
The next morning, of course, Betsy made a list.  Lists were always her comfort.  p.150
It was good to see Betsy growing up and learning about the world.  That way she has these experiences before settling down and getting married.  If she hadn't had a couple of romances, then her reunion with Joe might have fallen flat.  Betsy needed more life experience and she got plenty in her travels in Germany, France, Italy and Great Britain.  I enjoyed the descriptions of the places she visited and loved the clothing they wore and the trends in clothing at the time.  It was also interesting to see World War I begin from the viewpoint of an American in Europe and how that occupied the attentions of everyone.  It felt very real (mostly because these books are a fictionalized autobiography of Maud Hart Lovelace) and I was glad that Betsy and Joe are reunited in the end, but it was nice to see Betsy experience life outside of her comfort zone.

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