Fever 1793

Anderson, Laurie Halse

Katie Irvine

Wednesday, March 5, 2014


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Matilda Cook

Matilda is a 14 year old girl who acts lazy when its time for her to work. She kind, caring and brave. She always wanted to be referred as a young lady instead of a little girl.

Lucille Cook

Lucille is Matilda's mother who has been bitter and grouchy ever since her husband fell off a ladder and died. She wanted her daughter, Matilda, to be a good worker at the coffee shop.


Eliza is a free African-American who works for the coffee shop owned by Matilda's family. She is a hard worker and a very kind person. Eliza worked as a mature, respectful person.


Grandfather is a strong soldier who fought in the war. He adores his granddaughter Matilda. He has a parrot that kept him company as well as annoy everyone else with his stupid comments.


The setting of the story is in Philadelphia at a small coffee shop owned by Matilda's family. It is in the year 1793.


Matilda Cook never wanted to get out of bed to work. She complained every time her mother asked her to work. Her family owns a coffee shop In Philadelphia. Her mother has always been bitter and mean ever since Matilda's dadfell off a ladder and died. Eliza, a free African-American, works for them at her coffee shop. Her grandfather would always sit around with his parrot on his shoulder. everything was good and well. The shop was getting an ideal amount of customers until the fever broke out. Polly, another worker for the coffee shop, was one of the first people to get it. She died of this horrible disease. it was first said of a myth until hundreds of people started to unexpectedly die. Her mother, Lucille, caught it and made Matilda leave to a better and safer place. She and her grandfather packed up and left for a safer environment where they would less likely get sick at. Once they were on the carriage, grandfather came up with a cough. When they got halfway, she and her grandfather had to get out of the carriage and survive out on their own. Matilda was gathering food when she suddenly fainted. When she woke, she was in the hospital of fever victims. Matilda caught the Yellow Fever. She was in a big room with many other victims. A nurse finally came by and told her everything that happened. Her grandfather saved her and brought her there. When both of them were healthy and able to walk, they left the hospital and set off for home, the coffee shop. When they got there, it was ruined. Everything was broken and scattered. They fought to keep up with food for the few days until thefts came and killed grandfather. Matilda than figured she would search for her mother. She was wandering the streets when she came across a young girl who's mother died from the fever. Mattie took the little girl and wandered the streets once again. Mattie finally found Eliza who was delivering bread pieces to the remaining survivors. Matilda than lived with Eliza's family for a while until the little twin boys of the family and Nell, the little girl, came down with the fever. They all then decided that they would go back to the coffee shop where its is a lot cooler. When they were at the coffee shop, the kids were getting sicker and weaker until Matilda saw the frost. The frost was the sign that the fever was gone. The kids got better and the president came back to the city. Mattie's mother finally came home. She was better but still weak. When everyone was at the coffee shop, they all had a big feast. That was when Matilda announced that she wanted Eliza and her to work as partners at the coffee shop. Eliza took up the offer and everything was back to the way it was before except for the empty hole in everyone's heart from all the people and children lost by the horrible fever.

About the Award

The Margaret A. Edwards Award was established in 1988. It is for honoring Authors excellent work and for honoring the specific body of their work. It is given to young adult literature. This award is administered by YALSA and it is sponsored by the School Library Journal Magazine. The award is also annual.

About the Author

Laurie Halse Anderson grey up in Northern New York and loved to write from the start. She was born on October 23, 1961 in Potsdam, New York. She went to Georgetown University. She wrote as a Freelance for newspapers and magazines. She worked for Philadelphia Inequirer. She published her first book in 1996. She won the Margaret A. Edwards Award for the book Fever 1793 in 2009.

My Thoughts About the Book

I really enjoyed the book. I thought it was very thrilling and interesting. I also liked it because it had a good plot and it was very descriptive, so I understood it well. I think that the plot and the amazing descriptive text made it an award winning book. I think that this book fits the criteria of the Margaret A. Edwards Award.