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Secrets in the House of Delgado [Paperback]

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Item Number 143136  
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Item Description...
Overview
In Spain in 1492, fourteen-year-old Maria, a Catholic orphan, becomes a servant to a wealthy family of Conversos, converted Jews, at a time when the Jews are being expelled from the country and when the Inquisition is diligently searching for religious heretics.In Spain in 1492, Maria, a Catholic orphan, becomes a servant to a wealthy family of converted Jews, when the Jews are being expelled from the country and when the Inquisition is diligently searching for religious heretics.

Publishers Description
In 1492 thousands of people of the Jewish faith were leaving Spain.Inquisitors sought out anyone who might not be Catholic. Those accusedcould be tortured and burned at the stake.In this time of uncertainty and terror, fourteen-year-old Maria finds herselfalone and homeless. The Church offers Maria the opportunity towork for a wealthy Converso family. But the church also asks somethingof her in return.Secrets in the House of Delgado confronts issues of faith and bigotry, loyaltyand betrayal, and the secrets that may lie in every human heart.

Item Specifications...

Pages   180
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.28" Width: 5.38" Height: 0.56"
Weight:   0.55 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Sep 1, 2002
Publisher   Eerdmans Books for Young Readers
Age  9-14
ISBN  0802852106  
EAN  9780802852106  


Availability  16 units.
Availability accurate as of Feb 21, 2018 04:01.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Children's Books > History & Historical Fiction > Fiction > Europe   [386  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Children   [3826  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Teens > History & Historical Fiction > Historical Fiction   [1200  similar products]



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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Good research rings true  Sep 14, 2005
My 14-year-old daughter and I read this book aloud. We recommend it without reservation for those interested in living the final days of the Jewish expulsion from Spain under the Inquisition of the Catholic church.
The adolescent main character, Maria, was a Catholic sent by the church as a servant--and a spy--to a family of Conversos, those forced under duress to convert from Judaism to Catholicism. The plot took us to many sectors of the populace: the perpetrators, the victims, and those stuck in between. Maria exemplified the confusion of normal people caught in a horrific historical period. The author clearly exposed the injustices of the rampant antisemitism of the time as well as the deep seated beliefs of different Conversos. I found that element particularly interesting. What I hadn't realized is that some families had been Conversos for many generations before the final expulsion from Spain. The main characters had depth and underwent change as the story progressed--both necessary elements of good chldren's literature.
Maria was a typical teenager to whom any teenage girl could relate. She was faced with temptations and difficult choices. Actually, most every character faced impossible choices. The plot had so many suspenseful twists and turns that we could hardly put the book down. It helped us to place ourselves in that period. Not all stories lead us to be so entirely 'simpatico', another necessary element of good literature for any age.
Since I also highly esteemed the book "The Last Jew" by Noah Gordon, from the same period, I tried to read that aloud. I found very early on that it was too steeped in adult situations for my teenager's liking. She nixed it very early on--even when I did some creative read-editing on the spot. But it's an excellent Inquisition novel for adults interested in the period for the same reasons that made "Secrets of the House of Delgado" a good read for the family.
 
It made me think.  Jul 12, 2004
The year: 1492. Spain is ruled by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. Ruthlessly, the monarchs ordered all Spanish Jews to convert to Catholicism or face severe persecution. Jews and other non-Catholics were fleeing Spain by the thousands! No-one felt safe, not even Conversos, people who had converted to Catholicism. All Spaniards were ordered to find people who were not truly Catholic --- and those found were questioned, tried, convicted and severely punished.

14-year-old Maria Sanchez finds herself in a difficult situation. She has lost her parents and her little brother to sickness and she has no food or money to survive. Her uncle is the captain of a ship, but he's always at sea. But then one day, the Catholic Church helps Maria find a job working for the wealthy Delgado family in exchange for money, clothes, and food. Sounds great, but Maria must also do the priest a big, sneaky favor: she has to spy on the family! The priest wants to know if the Delgados are true conversos. Maria accepts the opportunity, grateful for any help, and that's when the adventures and trouble begin.

Juan Pablo, the Delgado's son, is being offered the opportunity to sail with Christopher Columbus. His father wants him to go but Juan doesn't. The whole family goes to Palos to look into the offer. One night while everyone is sleeping, soldiers of The Inquisition come into their house and take Dr. Delgado in for questioning. Maria feels guilty --- she told the priest what the Delgados were doing to help the poor and desperate Jews.

The Delgados once treated Maria as family, but now they can no longer trust her. Maria tries everything to help the family but nothing works. Will the Delgados be able to stay in Spain? Will they be persecuted by The Inquisition? How can Maria help the family?

Reading this book will make you think about how loyalty, honesty, betrayal, and keeping secrets really affect other people. It made me think about what I would have done if I was Maria. Read this book to find out what happens to the Delgado family, Maria, and a country that is filled with fear, accusations, poverty, and despair.

--- (...)

 
Secrets in the House of Delgado  Jul 16, 2002
This young adult novel plops the reader into Spain of 1492: not the Spain of Columbus and his travels to the Americas, sponsored by the King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, but the Spain of the Inquisition. One experiences the Spain that drove out the Moors and mandated conversion to Catholicism by all Jews who chose to remain. Maria, a fourteen-year-old orphaned peasant girl, gains employment in the home of wealthy Conversos (Jews who converted to Catholicism) via the intervention of a priest. He mentions that she must look for signs of heresy; she readily agrees hoping for a roof over her head and, perhaps, even a welcoming home. Built into the plot are accurate historical descriptions of daily life and background explanations outlining the complicated history of the Jews in Spain. Maria has some personal and ethical decisions to make and the reader, too, becomes swept up in the conflict, ironically similar to issues of religious tolerance debated today. Though at times the characters need more developement and the plot is predictable, I found the novel made history feel real. It would be a great addition to a humanities class studying anything from the Crusades, the "discovery" of America, Spain and the inquistion or the history of religious conflict.
 
Secrets in the House of Delgado  Jul 16, 2002
This young adult novel plops the reader into Spain of 1492: not the Spain of Columbus and his travels to the Americas, sponsored by the King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, but the Spain of the Inquisition. One experiences the Spain that drove out the Moors and mandated conversion to Catholicism by all Jews who chose to remain. Maria, a fourteen-year-old orphaned,peasant girl, gains employment in the home of wealthy Conversos (Jews who converted to Catholicism) via the intervention of a priest. He mentions that she must look for signs of heresy; she readily agrees hoping for a roof over her head and, perhaps, even a welcoming home. Built into the plot are accurate historical descriptions of daily life and background explanations outlining the complicated history of the Jews in Spain. Maria has some personal and ethical decisions to make and the reader, too, becomes swept up in the conflict, ironically similar to issues of religious tolerance debated today. Though at times the characters need more development, and the plot is predictable, I found the novel made history feel real. It would be a great addition to a humanities class studying anything from the Crusades, the "discovery" of America, Spain and the Inquistion or the history of religious conflict.
 
One girl's difficult choice during the Spanish Inquisition.  Aug 18, 2001
The year is 1492, the place is Spain, and fourteen-year-old Maria is on her own. Her parents and little brother are dead. She hasn't seen her only living relative, her uncle, who is a sea captain, in years. Desperate, she goes to the church her family attended to ask for help. The church helps her to get a position as a maid to a wealthy family, the Delgados. The Delgados are Conversos. They are Catholic now, but in the past, the family was Jewish. The church has placed her in the Delgado home as nothing more than a spy to find out if the family is secretly practicing their old religion. At first Maria is repulsed by the idea of working for a family that was once Jewish, but she comes to see that the Jews are not the evil villains the church has portrayed them as. When suspicion of heresy falls on the Delgados, she is forced to make a difficult choice. I highly reccomend this well-written and fascinating historical novel.
 

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