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Old Times October – Catherine, called Birdy

Catherine, called Birdy (1994) by Karen Cushman would be a good introduction to historical fiction for young teen girls.  It is set in medieval times and is written in diary form (and similar to many realistic fiction novels) with the secretive overtones and pact between narrator and reader being highly developed.  The reader feels every bit of Birdy’s frustration with being a girl in a society where she has no say about her life and is destined to be married off.  Birdy’s experiences are common place and not very adventurous – she sews, tends to her families medical needs, and gets annoyed with her father, and  this means her life is believable.  Therefore, because of the plausibility and the first person narration, many young adults will find comfort in the similarity with realistic fiction whist at the same time develop knowledge of another time and place.


About hgtl

I am a secondary English/History teacher (BA DipEd, MA (Education) and a Teacher Librarian (MEd). I LOVE to research and through this site aim to -Support the introduction of the Australian Curriculum (especially in History) through sourcing quality and varied internet based sources (research guides) - Support teachers through conducting education based literature reviews - Provide suggestions on useful Web 2.0 tools - Offer other services such as curriculum writing, library collection assessment, novel recommendations (see my blog


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