Article Title

One for Sorrow


Karen Abbott


Excellent, Young Adult, Mary Downing Hahn, Flue Epidemic, Friends, Bullying, Bullies, Death, Haunting

Document Type

Book Review


Annie Brown has moved to a new house and a new school. It is 1918 and Annie has been taught to be polite, but Elsie, a brash and unpopular girl at school, tries to force her to be her only friend. Annie feels uncomfortable but isn't quite sure how to handle the situation. Annie soon makes friends with other girls, Rosie in particular. When flu strikes the town Rosie thinks that it will be fun to read obituaries and visit the grieving families to enjoy the sweets at each wake. Still timid, Annie finds herself going from home to home, until they come to Elsie's wake. Her guilt puts an end to this unsavory pastime but Rosie has another great idea: Why not go sledding in the graveyard? It has the best hill. After a few runs, Annie ends up smashing her head into Elsie's tombstone. She receives a serious concussion and begins to see Elsie everywhere. Elsie gets her into increasing trouble until one day she ends up in a convalescent home. An elderly woman helps Annie befriend Elsie and to find peace for both of them.