A new book shares the story of American military nurses taken prisoner in the Philippines during World War II. PURE GRIT is written for younger readers and brings to life the women's courage, as they served in the Pacific following the attack on Pearl Harbor, treating wounded soldiers in the thick of battle. The book also chronicles the three years they spent in a prison camp, nursing other prisoners, until they were liberated by Allied forces. Incredibly, all of the nurses survived and returned home, including two from Western Washington.
Award-winning "young adult" genre author and former journalist Mary Cronk Farrell joined Margaret to share her inspiration for PURE GRIT, and share the stories of two nurses with local ties: Ethel Thor, who was born and raised in Tacoma, and returned to the South Sound following the war. Ethel passed away in 2002 at the age of 91. Frankie Lewey was born and raised in Texas, but she and her husband moved to Kirkland following the war to raise their family.Frankie passed away in 1987 at the age of 77.
NOTE: Mary will discuss and sign copies of PURE GRIT tonight (Monday, March 3) at Secret Garden Bookshop (2214 NW Market St., Seattle Phone: 206-789-5006)
In addition to PURE GRIT, Mary has written three other books for young readers:
JOURNEY TO THE TOP OF THE WORLD, which chronicles Kay LeClaire's quest to climb the "Seven Summits" (the hightest mountains on each of the seven continents). She completed her quest by climbing Mount Everest at the age of 60, becoming the oldest American woman to achieve this quest.
FIRE IN THE HOLE! - the story of the violent clash between union and "scab" silver miners in Northern Idaho a century ago.
DAUGHTERS OF THE DESERT - a groundbreaking short story collection spotlighting women who played important roles in the early days of Judaism, Christianity and Islam