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Ruby’s Wish by Shirin Yim Bridges

Ruby's Wish is a very good book. I strongly recommend this book because of the characters, the beautiful illustrations, and the lesson the book teaches.

Ruby is a very interesting character because she is interested in reading and writing, which back then, that was only taught to male humans/boys. Her grandfather, who was very rich (and had lots of grandchildren, a tradition for rich men in China) hired a teacher to teach reading and writing to anyone who wanted to learn.

Ruby learned with the boys but after the classes, she could not play because she needed to learn cooking and cleaning and how to be a good wife. Her mother thought that was the only things she had to know how to do.

Eventually, all the girls stopped going, except Ruby. She kept going. This proves that she cares about learning to read and write. Near the end of the book, the teacher asks the class to write a poem and Ruby wrote:

"Alas, bad luck to be born a girl; worse luck to be born into this house where only boys are cared for."

Her teacher was very impressed and showed it to her grandfather. He was impressed as well but was worried about what it meant. He called Ruby to his office. She explained to him that she would love to go to university like her boy cousins. At the end of the book, her grandfather grants her wish.

My next reason I love this book is that I love the illustrations. The setting is beautiful. You can see each leaf on most of the trees. Each character’s face is different. You can see it change from spring to summer, summer to autumn, autumn to winter.

You can also see the change in the age of Ruby. At the beginning of this book, Ruby looks at the age of nine or ten. Closer to the end, she resembles at the age of fifteen or sixteen. Like the book says, she is always wearing red.

My most favorite thing about this book is that it is a true story! The author mentions that at the end of the book that Ruby is her grandmother and that every day she still wears a little red. I love true stories and biographies because it tells the story of their life.

The message throughout the text, Ruby's Wish, focuses on that that you can do whatever you put your mind to. Throughout the story, Ruby is determined to continue her lessons even though it makes her have a lot of extra work.

An example from the story that shows this is when the story state’s “ One by one, the girls stopped going to the lessons. All except Ruby.” As she got older, she confessed to her grandfather that she wanted to go to university. He granted her wish.

If I were to recommend the book, Ruby’s Wish to a certain age, I would recommend this book to ages 8 to 10. My first reason I recommend this book to ages 8 to 10 and not any younger is because there is a lot of detail that a younger reader may not notice. There are some words that a younger reader may struggle with, and may not understand what the book is supposed to teach, but it is still a great book.

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