Choldenko, Gennifer. Chasing Secrets. Random House Children's, 2015.
Lizzie lives in San Francisco at the turn of the last century, and because she's a girl, she's stuck learning about leaving calling cards and dancing instead of studying science and medicine. Luckily, her father, who is a doctor, allows Lizzie to accompany him on many of his calls. She is determined to learn as much as she can so she can go to medical school and become a doctor herself. But when Chinatown is cordoned off due to rumors of plague, Lizzie finds herself wrapped in a mystery, one that could have devastating consequences.
This is a great historical fiction book for middle grade children. There is enough mystery and action mixed in with very real historical events to keep even reluctant readers still turning the pages. I was drawn to this book because of the San Francisco setting, and I am now curious to learn more about the plague outbreak of 1900. I could easily recommend this book to the tweens at my library and am considering using it as a book club book for my 9-12 year old book club.
Recommended for: middle grade, tweens
Red Flags: Lizzie's older brother wants to be a fighter, so he comes home beaten up on occasion. There's some "minor peril" as Lizzie attempts to break into Chinatown and find her friend.
Overall Rating: 5/5 stars
Read-Alikes: The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, The Fire Horse Girl, Elizabeth Blackwell: America's First Woman Doctor, Stella by Starlight
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley for the purposes of review.