Ellen Foster Criticism

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Critics responded favorably to Ellen Foster when it first appeared in 1987, praising Gibbons' skill crafting Ellen's narrative voice and the sensitivity she portrayed in Ellen's struggle with racism. Some critics deliberated the believability of Ellen's position as narrator, questioning whether she is too wise for her years. A critic for Kirkus Reviews suggested that Ellen's instinctual wisdom belies her eleven years yet in her "innocence" and "tough stoicism" the voice of this young narrator "rings true" A Publishers Weekly reviewer spoke in the same vein, calling Ellen's narrative voice a correct portrayal of the world from a child's view but one that was sometimes "too knowing."

Other critics focused on Gibbons's treatment of her subject matter, commenting that the terrible events of Ellen's young life could be read as melodramatic if not for Ellen's narrative voice. The Publishers Weekly reviewer, unsure about Ellen's capacity for saving the narrative...

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This section contains 629 words
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Buy the Ellen Foster Study Guide
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Novels for Students
Ellen Foster from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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