A BOOK REVIEWED
Sarah’s Wish is a relatively short book with brief chapters, making it easy to read on the go. The story is clearly organized and the North versus South brogues and twangs in dialogue provide a clear picture of who is speaking. The characters are colorful and alive. The vibrant interaction of Granny, Dr. Baum and Sarah will warm readers’ hearts and keep everyone smiling. Sarah is a memorable character because she only wants to help people but doesn’t always have a good cover story for her secretive good deeds.
Just before Sarah is orphaned, she promises her dying mother that she will continue her work with the Underground Railroad. Throughout the story Sarah has two goals: 1) to help runaways get to freedom and 2) to find a family. Along the way she is taken in by Granny, an elderly woman with a colorful country drawl and a wealth of knowledge about herbs and medicines. Dr. Baum checks in with Sarah frequently during the book, setting her arm in a cast after the buggy accident and later escorting her and Granny to Louisville to find a family for Sarah. These three characters bond to one another and protect each other against the leers and aggressions of slimy slave catchers.
The main character, Sarah, is a spirited young woman who hates being called a little girl. She shows a genuine respect for both people and animals. She is also loyal to those who love her and is clever against those who would harm her or those she loves. She is also an honest young woman who hates to lie. Her mother taught her much about being a lady and to be honest and respectful to everyone. Granny teaches Sarah to be discerning and to give people a chance before judging them. Dr. Baum also re-enforces this teaching.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Sarah’s Wish by Jim Baumgardner and highly recommend it to anyone who believes that all people are equal and deserve humane treatment and respect. The structure of the book made it easy to read in the short breaks of my busy day, and the story was so interesting and well connected, it was still understandable even when read in short spurts.
Rebekah Mosolf, a professional writing major at Taylor University Fort Wayne