I have a new category of books: COZY YA. There’s no mayhem or murder. My first pick is The Hired Girl by Laura Amy Schlitz (Newberry Award winner). It’s the 1900’s in America. Joan runs away from the farm and her brutish Father. Through luck and pluck, Joan gains a position as a hired girl in a wealthy Jewish family in Baltimore. It’s a book of firsts; the wonders of city living, the life of a Reformed Jewish family, and love. Those are the bones of the story, but there is so much more to it. Reading The Hired Girl took me back to the first time I was swept away by a book. Think of the Little House Books, or The Little Princess or The Secret Garden. That’s what The Hired Girl did for me.