Dreams in the Golden Country

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Dreams in the Golden Country is a historical fiction book about the life of a Jewish Immigrant named Zipporah Feldman, called Zippy.

She comes to New York City in 1903 and keeps a diary of all of her experiences in this new country.

In the comments, respond to one of the following prompts:

Each character in Zippy’s family is challenged by life in New York.  Name one character and explain a challenge they face as they adjust to life in America.  How do they face this  challenge?  Do you think they were successful?

Imagine you are Zippy writing a letter to a friend back in Russia.  This friend is coming to America next month.  What are three pieces of advice would you give this friend.  Explain why this friend should heed your advice.

I look forward to reading your replies!

10 thoughts on “Dreams in the Golden Country

  1. Great post, for the writing to a friend in Russia bit, i think that Zippy might need to tell her friend some American trates and things. [maybe their manners are expressed differently in Russia]

  2. I am going to write about Zippy’s mom Sara. She does not like America at all and it’s very hard for her to adjust. She also thinks that her kids and husband are getting to used to life here. One thing that she does not want to let go of is her wig. Back in Russia women used to wear wigs and when she came to America she kept wearing it. I don’t really think that she made a successful change but I hope she will keep working at it!

  3. I cant believe the book didnt tell us what happens to uncle Shmully and blues mom! but overall the story was great it was actually one of the best class story book i have ever heard of. I hope they make another dreams in the golden country book. I think that Mamma was facing a challenge where she didn’t want to think about Mirrium and Shawn because she thought that Mirrium was becoming an immigrant to a different culture but she got through it at the end and she was happy with Shawn and Mirrium.

  4. I loved this book, it was so interesting seeing things from a different time in the past.
    The person I thought was having a hard time adjusting to her surroundings was Sara the mom, I know that she was very concerned about change, and didn’t want her family not to be religious anymore. Slowly the dad was doing less and less things they used to do, Sara didn’t like that. But in the end I think she let go, and only wanted to be with her family to not be so uptight about those things and just be grateful for everything she has.
    I would tell my friend to be careful because anything could happen when you are coming to a new place.
    The second thing would be that in this country you can make your dreams come true.
    For my third thing I would say I have had some sad experiences so be ready because something could happen.

    I think they would believe me because all of those things happened. You could get bullied for being new. I would say my dreams became true because I became an actress. For the third thing Mami died and so did yossil. So all of those things happened that means I would be telling the truth.
    I have a question… What happened to the uncle and Blu’s mom? That’s my question.

    Thanks for reading my comment,

  5. Miriam:
    She used to be a character who wasn’t mentioned a lot. We didn’t know much about her. Then she fell in love with a christian man. Her family would never approve, so she kept it a secret. Zippy found out and supported it. Then they decided to get married. Miriam told her family and Mama didn’t approve. Miriam eloped with Sean and they lived together. No one in the Feldman family knew where she was. Zippy thought Tova knew where she was, but we weren’t sure. Then Zippy saw Miriam. She didn’t say anything about it. She kept it to herself. On Yom Kippur, Mama spoke about Miriam, as if she was dead! She kept saying bad things about her. But when Zippy got in a play and none of her family could come, Miriam and her husband Sean came. They came to the house and Mama felt differently. Maybe it was because her new born baby died or maybe she just came to forgive her. Miriam changed a lot, I could tell from Zippy’s writing about her in her Diary.

  6. If I was Zippy, writing to a friend in Russia, I would probably ask how she was. After that, my advice would be this:
    Just so that you know, the streets are not actually paved with gold. Money is hard to get. Yet, the wonders in New York. I love the theater. It is one of the great things in New York. Working hard is a very important thing in New York, I worked hard to get into eighth grade. You will too. Your mama and papa might not like it here because it is so free, they might find it hard to not let go of religion. My mama does. Americans have many funny sayings. You will learn them as you get used to New York. These warnings and advice might help you become less of a green horn and more of a yankee. I am so excited to see you!

    I think that Zippy’s mother Sarah had a lot of challenges in their new home. She was so attached to her culture and religion, but it was so hard to keep all of that in New York. Especially when Tova joined the union. Sarah also went through a lot when her only son died and when Miriam left. I think that she went through a lot of challenges in America.

  7. If I was Zippy I would give advice to my friend.

    1: Be patient and you will move up to the right grade soon.

    2: When you come be careful because if you are sick or have a disease you can get held back.

    3: If something goes wrong it will be fine in the end.

    That is the advice I would give to a friend and if they are coming good luck.

  8. I think she was success full in living in the new contry she did have a lot of hared times such as. her sister fell in love with a non Jewish man. They got married. The mom said that the married woman was dead.
    But then Zippy started to like acting she met a man named bores and he had a girlfriend a few days before the wedding she died.they also had a baby that died but they all live happy ever after.

  9. If i was giveing advice to my friend whos coming to America from Russia i would
    1. The world around you is weird at first but you will get used to it.
    2.If you are in a low at first grade dont worry you’ll get promoted to a higher grade if you do well.
    3.learn the American languge it will help you alot.

  10. Our class didn’t know much about miriam, all we knew was that she fell in love with a christian man and got married with him. Her mama thought of her as dead because they haven’t seen miriam for a year or more. Zippy who is twelve always wanted to become a actress, her sister got her dream to get married to sean but then left zippy alone with her other sister tova who never really cared about zippy. Zippy always thought it was mean that her sister miriam got what she wanted but zippy couldn’t get what she wanted so she (zippy) stood up and Additioned for a play and she got a part. Her mother gave birth to a baby boy and named it Joseph (Yoss-elle) zippy was sad when she heard the news but happy she thought her mother was trying to replace her sister miriam that was why she was sad but she was happy to have a brother but then something sad happened….. 5 hours before zippy came back from the play her brother yosselle died she was upset and so were her parents they had a day of silence. Tova: tova is not very caring but she was nice to zippy when tova heard that her parents kept saying miriam died but zippy knew she didn’t she promised her sister miriam that she wouldn’t tell anyone. Mami: she was a great friend of zippy and boris mami was gonna get married to boris but she died in a fire zippy and boris were heart broken. I thought this book (dreams in the golden country) was a great book.

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