First published in 1906, The Shuttle is a story of American industry. Rosalie Vanderpoel, daughter of a wealthy American, marries into a British family of aristocrats, only to discover how truly impoverished-both in money and character-that class had become. After many years with her deplorable husband, she is unable to contact her family back home. Suspicions grow, and Rosalie's sister Bettina heads to England to find out what has happened.
Bettina is a smart, modern, witty woman who epitomizes the American character of industriousness and energy. She knows what she wants and has the power and money to go after it. Bettina's money and spunk revitalize the English society she comes in contact with, suggesting on a larger scale that what Britain needs to improve its future is to adopt an American mentality.
Those interested in women's literature as well as anyone looking to rekindle their pride in the American spirit will find this an enjoyable read.
English author FRANCES HODGSON BURNETT (1849-1924) moved to America in 1865. She became a writer in order to support her siblings after her parents died. Among her most famous works are Little Lord Fauntleroy (1886) and The Secret Garden (1909).