Understood Betsy

From the time she was orphaned at six months of age, Elizabeth Ann has lived with her widowed Great-aunt Harriet and single Aunt Frances. In their small city apartment, these two ladies have tried for nine years to raise Elizabeth Ann "by the book". Indeed Frances has read many parenting books and discovered that Elizabeth Ann is the most sensitive, impressionable and emotional child to ever live. She hardly lets the child out of her sight, and as a result Elizabeth Ann can do nothing for herself. Then, one day, Aunt Harriet takes ill, and Elizabeth Ann is sent to live with the dreaded country cousins, the Putneys. Frightened beyond all telling, Elizabeth rides the train to Vermont and discovers who she really was.

Betsy (as her Vermont cousins call her) learns that the universe does not revolve around her. Aunt Abigail, Uncle Henry and Cousin Ann treat her as a capable young woman who must contribute to family life. Betsy learns to overcome her inclination to focus on herself, and begins to put the needs of others before her own. She finds that independence and service have great rewards. Readers will watch her outgrow her self-centered, pampered ways and become a compassionate and resourceful young lady.

Jennifer Minicus is a mother and teacher currently living in Ridgewood, NJ.


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